Gender equality at new heights: Kanchhi Maya Tamang summits Mount Everest for gender equality in sports

Date: Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Kanchhi Maya Tamang on Mount Everest. Photo courtesy of Kanchhi Maya Tamang
Kanchhi Maya Tamang on Mount Everest. Photo courtesy of Kanchhi Maya Tamang

After an 11-hour-climb from Camp 4 on Everest’s South Col route, Kanchhi Maya Tamang, together with Pemba Dorje Sherpa, and their Sherpa teammates reached the 29,035 feet (8,848 metres) summit of the world’s highest peak on 20 May. It was the first time someone has climbed Mount Everest for gender equality and women’s empowerment.

“My win is a win for all women and girls. And my mission is to contribute to a discrimination-free Nepal where all girls and women have freedom and an enabling environment to realize their full human potential,” said Tamang, a 28-year-old from the Sindupalchowk district of Nepal.

Tamang emphasized the importance of supporting and motivating more women and girls to try mountaineering and all sports.

“For many Nepali women and girls there is an invisible Everest between their homes and the sports field. I have climbed Everest to empower women who are climbing their own mountains,” she said.

Ganesh Gurung, a member of UN Women’s Nepal Civil Society Advisory Group, which supported Maya’s mission said: “Kanchhi Maya has proven to the world and to Nepali society that women possess the capacity to reach any height.”

Read the full story on UN Women’s regional website for Asia and the Pacific.