Young people on Inspiring Explorers Expeditions™ share an experience-of-a lifetime in one of the most extreme and remote places on Earth. They return home filled with memories of their incredible adventures, the jaw-dropping sights they have seen, the extraordinary wildlife they observed, and the many ways they have pushed themselves outside their comfort zones.
In the months following the expedition, each Inspiring Explorer delivers their own tailored outreach programme, when they share their exciting stories from the expedition and inspire their community to go out and explore. Given the diversity of each explorer’s life experiences and strengths, their outreach programmes can vary significantly – but all reach a wide audience in their own unique way.
Sadra Sultani was a member of the 2020 Inspiring Explorers Expedition™ to the Antarctic Peninsula. The icy, remote landscape of the Antarctic couldn’t be more different from dusty, hot, war-torn Afghanistan, where Sadra was born and lived with her family until they came to New Zealand more than a decade ago.
She is the first young Muslim person to be selected as an Inspiring Explorer, and part of a community affected by the tragic terrorist attack in Christchurch, New Zealand on 15 March 2019.
Sadra has been incredibly busy sharing her experiences in the Antarctic with other young people in the Muslim community, while encouraging them to find their own spirit of exploration.
Following the expedition, Sadra, who is a Law and Politics student at the University of Canterbury, ran a series of four inspirational workshops and conferences (both online and in person). During these sessions, Sadra led informal discussions around exploration, which included the self-imposed limits that might stop some people from exploring, and how they might overcome them. She talked about her own fear of deep water, which almost stopped her from applying for the Antarctic expedition, but how glad she was that she pushed through her apprehensions.
Sadra also held six Zoom conferences during New Zealand’s lockdown, which were attended by between 50–100 people each time, when she discussed the theme of exploration and talked about her exciting personal experiences during the expedition and the work of the Antarctic Heritage Trust.
In January, Sadra involved 12 young Muslim men and women (aged between 16 and 30) in a virtual camp with exploration as the major theme, which she organised in conjunction with AYC Auckland, New Zealand. Sadra is currently organising a two-day conference for young Muslim women as a follow up to the camp, and will include numerous exploration activities. “Rather than just talking about it, or reading about it, I want other young people in the Muslim community to experience exploration for themselves, which is so impactful,” she said.
Sadra says young people who explore are a key to the future. “When humans explore, we make the world and the universe our classroom. It is the next generation that could make discoveries that will change the world. I’m so grateful to the Antarctic Heritage Trust for creating an environment to encourage discovery through exploration, which is so crucial, especially in the world we are living in today.”