Founder and Activist
Ayak D Mithyang
Jok Biong Kuol
Director of Education
During the 1985 civil war in South Sudan, my siblings and mother went to North Sudan. My father was forced by the government to stay in South Sudan. We settled in Omdurman where my mother started working as a midwife, cleaning houses to provide for my siblings and me. She struggled to try to provide a living for us. She couldn’t afford to put us in school, so we could only have one meal a day. She was a very strong and faithful woman.
In January 1998, my mother and sister went back to South Sudan to see my father, who was still not able to come to North Sudan to see his family. On April 8, my father was captured by the Northern Army and taken away in front of my mother and sister. There were about one hundred men captured with him too. Three days later, one of the men escaped back to the village. He told my mother he saw about 20 men killed, but he had not seen my father in particular. A few months later, my mother and sister came back to North Sudan where I had been left with my three older brothers. My mother explained to us our father had been taken away on April 8 and never made it back.
In 2002, I traveled to Egypt, and on September 9, 2004, I arrived in the United States as a refugee. I am truly grateful to have this opportunity to help the children of South Sudan, who are living the same life I lived before. I want to help provide education and health, by building schools and health care centers throughout South Sudan where kids can learn and make friends across the world.