Saray Khumalo has become the first black African woman to reach the top of the world!!!
Mount Everest, Nepal – Saray Khumalo, a Zambia-born, Johannesburg resident, on Thursday morning became the first black African woman to reach the summit of Mount Everest with an elevation of 8,848m.
Saray is an award-winning mountaineer, a Mandela libraries ambassador, a social entrepreneur, mother of two boys and also an executive in one of the distinguished financial institutions in South Africa. She has over time demonstrated her commitment to making a difference in her environment through mountaineering.
A short while ago, at 5:15 am South Africa time – Saray reached the top of the world. With her birth in Zambia, Rwandan bloodline and now a South African, this sister of Africa has achieved her goal of becoming the first black woman from Africa to summit Mount Everest.
In 2012 Saray summitted Mt Kilimanjaro and in the process raised funds for the Lunchbox Fund. The mountaineering passion took hold and she embarked on a journey to climb the highest peak on each continent, not for herself but the education of African children. She summitted Mt Elbrus in 2014 and Mt Aconcagua in 2015. She became a Nelson Mandela Libraries ambassador and raised nearly R1m for school libraries.
After being on Everest during both the serac fall (2014) and the earthquake (2015), she reached the south summit in 2017. Through pure perseverance, grit and courage she decided to return to Mt Everest in 2019.
During this expedition, she supports the Dr Thandi Ndlovu Foundation.
One of her goals with Climbing for a purpose is to be an example to the next generation of leaders; to inspire them to pursue their dreams and summit their everyday peaks in education and other spheres of life, knowing that nothing is impossible if we dare to dream!