They hope to be the first all-female team from the Middle East to conquer the world’s highest mountain.
You know the saying, “you never know a person’s story until you have walked a mile in their shoes”?
Well, a group of Jordanian women are taking the adage to new heights – 8,848 metres, in fact.
The group, which goes by the name RISE, is training to become the first all-female team from the Middle East to summit Mount Everest.
Their mission statement is to inspire people in the region, especially women, to defy stereotypes and “rise” with their communities in pursuit of their dreams, irrespective of their gender, age or faith.
Leading the expedition is Jordanian mountaineer Mostafa Salameh, who is one of only 12 people in the world to have climbed the highest peaks on every continent and ascended both poles.
After summiting Everest in 2008, Salameh said he would only attempt to make the climb again with a Jordanian woman alongside him.
He found five women willing to join him: Abeer Seikaly, Farah Abu Baker, Iman Al Majali, Israa Abu Soufeh and Maria Halaseh.
Each woman has different motivations for making the climb – one is a grandmother who wants to make her grandchildren proud, while another hopes to become the first hijabi woman to climb Mount Everest.
Their shared goal is to shatter the image of the “oppressed and inferior” Arab woman that can be common in the media.
Earlier this year, the group completed a high altitude mountaineering training course in Nepal, to prepare for the difficult conditions they will encounter.
They will attempt to conquer the world’s highest mountain in April 2018. Good luck, ladies!