In April of 2015 Sara Safari was climbing Mount Everest to plant the flag of her charitable organization empowering marginalized girls on the top of the highest point in the world. She felt strong and ready for the arduous climb after having spent more than two years training and preparing for the adventure. She was climbing the last few meters of the infamous Khumbu Icefall, the most dangerous part of the ascent, when a devastating earthquake rocked the country, killing more than 10,000 people, leaving more than 100,000 children without homes, and completely destroying Base Camp. For those stuck on the mountain, crushing avalanches and aftershocks collapsed the icefall, leaving the woman hanging on to the wall and ladder by her ice ax.
Unlike most of the climbers who attempt Everest for personal glory, this woman was risking her life in order to bring greater attention to the thousands of girls in Nepal who are trafficked into sex slavery or forced into early marriage.After a week, she was rescued in a daring helicopter landing, She found the girls in a devastating situation and doubled her efforts of fundraising to build back houses and schools in Nepal.
She was a neophyte climber who had given up her new hobby when she found the challenges and physical rigors too difficult. She wondered why anyone would subject themselves to such danger and discomfort, just to be able to say they stood on top of the world. She needed an incentive far greater than mere personal achievement and eventually she found that motivation in the plight of the girls she was trying to help.
She recently wrote an inspirational book about her life changing experience, spiritual redemption and a search for social justice called “Follow My Footsteps”. She is donating all the profit to the neglected and marginalized girls, to a non profit called “Empower Nepali Girls”.