San Francisco-based Courageous Girls is a nonprofit dedicated to healing and empowering sexually abused girls through physical endurance, trauma healing and mindfulness meditation. On April 1st, Courageous Girls will bring a select group of young women survivors from Nepal and San Francisco on a guided trek to base camp Mount Everest, where they’ll be inspired to live their lives to their fullest potential. To learn more about this incredible organization, please visit and consider donating to their Indiegogo Campaign.
The San Francisco group of Courageous Girls have been training hard over the last seven weeks in preparation for their expedition, and on Sunday, March 13th, when heavy rains kept the girls from being able to hike into Tennessee Valley and Muir Beach as planned, they came to Mission Cliffs instead, and the girls had the opportunity to come to train and climb in a climbing gym for the first time ever. Here is Mission Cliffs Member and Courageous Girls Leader, Silvia Vasquez-Lovado’s account of their visit:
Everyone was really excited and after a good time spent trying multiple sizes of shoes and harnesses, we got into the wall for some basic introduction.
After a detailed intro, the girls were nervous and excited to try their footing on the wall, especially our youngest member – Guillermina, who is only 4. But she picked up on the joy of climbing in no time and shared a special time climbing alongside her mom.
The hardest part for all the crew was trusting in letting go once they reached the top and trusting that your belay partner would be able to bring you down to safety.
After everyone had a chance of switching roles on the training wall, we headed to the main floor and found the 5.5; 5.7 area as the perfect spot to challenge ourselves.
I was really impressed with the ability and the determination that the group had. If anything, letting go from the wall was the biggest leap of faith but in their own words, overcoming that initial fear was the biggest treat they were able to experience.
Little Guillermina had the most excitement, fearlessly challenging herself and discovering the joys of swinging from the rope.
After two and a half hours of hard work, everyone had given all their best, and we celebrated with a good feast of Mexican tacos as a big reward after the climbs. Thank you Mission Cliffs for having us climb with you!
To learn more about Courageous Girls and their fundraiser, visit: