Amal Al-Saffar made her mark on history a year ago this month when at age 19 she became the first Bahraini to go to Antarctica, as an ambassador for the 2041 Antarctic Youth Ambassador Program. This month, the international logistics student at Bahrain Polytechnic is heading to Mount Kilimanjaro in hopes of encouraging more Bahraini youth to become proactive. At home, Amal promotes sustainability and greener lifestyles and has become one of her country’s youngest role models, especially for young women.
What made you decide to venture out to Antarctica?
I was actually watching TV and there was an interview with the Saudi woman who went to Antarctica. I told myself, ‘well, why not?–If she can do it, maybe I can too.’
Why Mount Kilimanjaro?
When I returned from Antarctica, I got an opportunity to go to Mount Everest and Kilimanjaro but Everest came first, and there was only a 6-month gap between them. So I decided that I would do Kilimanjaro first and then Everest. The trip is 12 days and the mountain itself is around 5,900m above sea level. We’re going to be 10 climbers; nine are from the US, and I’m the only Bahraini/Arab.
What do you hope to accomplish in the next five years?
I want to be a world champion public speaker, to do my Ph.D. in environmental studies and sustainability, and to write a book about my expeditions.
For more info – http://dt.bh/on-the-road-to-kilimanjaro/