An all-female soccer team has just set a world record for the highest elevation FIFA-rules soccer game. The match took place at nearly 19,000 feet in the Crater of Mount Kilimanjaro as part of the Equal Playing Field (EPF) project aimed at supporting women’s participation in sport.
Playing a full 90-minute soccer game at such high elevation required full commitment from the players and their support team. As well as guiding the group throughout their Kilimanjaro adventure, Nature Discovery set up oxygen recovery stations for the players to use during the game.
The players were mostly current or former professional soccer players from 19 different countries across five continents, along with players from Tanzania’s Future Stars female football team. Not content with the major feat of playing a full soccer game at such heights, after the match 55 of the 60 people in the EPF group, including players, coaches, referees and film crews, summitted Mount Kilimanjaro.
Nature Discovery was proud to be chosen to manage, outfit and guide this special trek. As part of our commitment to responsible tourism and social equity, it was our pleasure to support EPF in their venture.
If you don’t have time to watch it now, add the documentary EPF created covering the challenge to your watch list. It follows the inspiring journey of these 30 women as they climb Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania to take part in the world’s highest-altitude soccer match, and creating a platform to discuss gender equality in sport. It’s awesome!
More About Equal Playing Field’s Soccer on Kilimanjaro Initiative
Photo credit: Dana Roesiger
The Equal Playing Field movement was created to take on a challenge and set a world record that no one else, of any gender, had ever done.
The project is raising awareness and funding for women’s football development and connecting girls with adult leagues so they can play at any age. It’s challenging the social norms for girls and women in sport, creating new opportunities and rebalancing the systematic and structured inequality that girls and women face in sport and in most aspects of their lives.
While the barriers to participation in sport for women exist almost everywhere, they’re even higher in developing countries, where poverty and cultural ideas about gender roles hold women back. Find out more about EPF here.