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    Keeping people nourished, fueled, and full

    Day 286

    Super Women of South Sudan

    If there is a gathering within an East African community, you can rest assured that food is high on the priority list! Food not only nourishes, it allows the cooks to indulge in rich traditional practices and share something creative for others to enjoy.

    South Sudan Unite is an annual cultural event series bringing together hundreds of diaspora members for a weekend of learning, sharing and celebration. Part of the celebration was a community festival at Cristo Rey Jesuit High School in Minneapolis, featuring activities like basketball, soccer, face painting, virtual reality games, and music from South Sudan!

    With so many jam-packed events, keeping people fueled is a vital part of maintaining all of the positive energy.

    Nyapal Chol moved to Hopkins, MN from Nebraska — two states with large South Sudanese communities. During the planning process, SSU organizers reached out to Nyapal and asked her if she’d be willing to share her talents with her community in a big way — by preparing traditional South Sudanese food for over 200 people during the community festival!

    Nyapal jumped at the opportunity. “I love cooking and I love food,” she said, “so I cannot think of a better way to serve my community!”

    Nyapal called on two of her sisters and set to work, cooking from 12PM on Friday to 6AM on Saturday morning!

    The results were glorious. Food began arriving by the tray, steaming and teeming with mouth-watering, freshly prepared food that Nyapal’s family has been crafting for generations. There was mandazi, fried rice, goat, chicken, beef, plantains and more — it seemed like the mountains of sambusas were no match for the crowds that savored Nyapal’s food! Nyapal looked on as she watched her community dig in and enjoy.

    Shortly thereafter, Nyapal and her sisters received the Alight-sponsored Women Empowerment Grant from the Luol Deng Foundation. Event organizers wanted to take the opportunity to highlight and celebrate these women, not only their contributions this weekend, but to recognize and honor all that South Sudanese women do to nourish their communities.


    Meet Zu! Zu works on the Global Connections Team at Alight in Minneapolis. She’s American-Ugandan, but she’s spent most of her life in the Midwest. She feels fortunate to have witnessed the power of human connection and understanding that is unleashed when we simply create space to come together and share our stories.



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    Changemakers 365

    by Alight


    The world’s tough problems can seem insurmountable. So at Alight, while we tackle those big problems we also do what’s doable. Right then. And that’s what Changemakers 365 is all about. Learn more!


    Changemakers 365 members give either $30 per month or a one-time gift of $365 (it’s free for anyone who has ever lived in a refugee camp). Join us!

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