by Asimwe Suedi, Kisa Mentor, AfricAid Moshi Office
The named themselves the “Kili Divas.” This team of 14 climbers from AfricAid (three Kisa Mentors, two Kisa Alumnae and nine Kisa friends from Colorado) began their seven day hike up Mt. Kilimanjaro on January, 18, 2016. This was the first mountain climb for all five Tanzanian women, but luckily they had as much support from the rest of team members that any beginner would appreciate.
Enjoying looking at the beauty of the mountain, experiencing a variety of challenges, sharing different cultural backgrounds, exchanging ideas and laughs, and accomplishing the goal were the group’s most valuable moments, both individually and as a team. Having supportive and caring tour guides and porters made the climb more enjoyable. So many things that happened on the mountain will make this adventure memorable, but the biggest challenge faced was weather. It rained continuously for three days, which caused some trouble for the climbers, as well as wet gear. On the fourth day, the sun came out and more gear was sent up the mountain. This was so helpful and a bright spot for all of us.
Kilimanjaro is the highest mountain in Africa and it feels so good finally reaching the top of it! It wasn’t so good missing three team members on the day of the summit, but the fact that they worked so hard to accomplish their goal made the team so proud of them. Big thanks to the AfricAid team for doing the mountain climb as it is an inspirational adventure, both for ourselves and for the Scholars that we mentor.