Monica Akuien*


South Sudan

Monica Akuien emigrated to the U.S. from South Sudan through the Kakuma refugee camp in Kenya in 1989. Before the Sudan civil war in 1983, she was a middle school teacher. In Des Moines, she works as a native language tutor for Bilingual Community Outreach. She is president of the board of directors for Bor Women Association USA, a non-profit organization aimed at empowering South Sudanese women through education. She also does presentations about South Sudan’s rich culture, diversity, her journey through Sudan, Ethiopia, and Kenya with five children to reach the United States, and her life in refugee camps.