Our program

Each year, we recruit a new team of Afghan girls aged 15-24 to embark on a challenging two-year program to become the next generation of leaders.
In Kabul, the team trains six days a week and conducts trauma resiliency sessions, team building activities, trip planning duties, and community service projects. The second year team mentors the first year team and alumnae stay connected with the program through outreach and employment opportunities, creating an Ascend network of accomplished and supportive women in Afghanistan.
Learn about the various modules of our two-year athletic based training program.
  • Progressive fitness training helps to develop the physical and mental wellbeing of our athletes. The training emphasises the importance of self discipline and that if you keep putting one foot in front of another, you will get to where you want to go. 

  • From single pitch climbs to multi pitch mountain ascents, the girls take on bigger and bigger challenges as the program progresses. The gradual development of climbing skills is in direct comparison to their growth in personal courage and self- confidence.

  • Learning practical skills such as navigation and camp craft is more than just survival. These skills teach our girls about independence, resilience and adaptability. It shows the girls that they can rely on themselves.

  • Through community service projects and public speaking engagements, the girls build important leadership skills to become future change makers. 

  • Five mountaineering expeditions are planned each year for the team with instructors and guides from the US, Europe and Afghanistan. As well as putting into practise the skills the girls have learnt, the expeditions are milestones in their personal journeys.



See the impact



© 2020 by Ascend,

a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization based in the United States.

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