Host an Evening of South Sudanese Culture and Food!
Bring a Taste of South Sudan to Your Kitchen and Living Room
Join Rebuild South Sudan in celebrating the vibrant culture of South Sudan by hosting a dinner or speaking event. This event will feature South Sudanese culture, music, and handmade goods, offering a glimpse into the world’s youngest country’s spirit of resilience. Guest speakers will include Juba resident and RSS board member, Michael Mayen, and executive board member, Katie Rivers. Also presented will be further information on how to become involved in supporting education, economics, health, and women in South Sudan.
There are many things about South Sudan that rarely make it into the news: food, music, dance, art, wrestling. (Shout out to the New York Times for bringing more South Sudanese culture into the limelight.) Our hope is that by allowing people to witness the beauty of South Sudanese culture, they will join us in supporting this resilient nation.
Our Guest Speaker: Michael Mayen
Michael Mayen was a walking skeleton when he arrived at Kakuma, a Kenyan refugee camp, in the late 80s. He and Michael Kuany, Rebuild South Sudan founder, walked as Lost Boys together from the east bank of the Nile into Ethiopia and finally to Kenya. Together, during their time in the refugee camps, they would lay awake at night dreaming of how they would make a difference in South Sudan one day.
Against all odds, Michael gained an education which culminated in a Master’s in Economics and Statistics from Australia’s Macquarie University. His goal was to return home to be a force of good and rebuild sustainable economic infrastructure. Starting in 2013, he worked for five years at the Central Bank in Juba. Now he is a Rebuild South Sudan board member and is head of all operations on the ground in Juba, Bor, and Jalle.
Michael is a leader among the Jalle community living in Juba. He is a devoted husband and a father to three children. His experiences with devastation and poverty as a Lost Boy drive him to build a society that will benefit the most vulnerable people. Michael embodies the resilience, hope, and hard work of the South Sudanese people.
What Does is Mean to Host an Evening of South Sudanese Culture?
If you sign up to host, you sign up to be a partner with us on the event. We’re responsible for some tasks and you take on some tasks. We’ll talk through the details with each host to ensure that we together we create an event that works for everybody. Below is the starting place, though.
When Would I Host an Event?
We are scheduling events and dinners between September 15, 2018 and October 20, 2018. Contact us to find a date that works best for you (firstname.lastname@example.org).
What a Host Does:
- Share you Kitchen and Living Room (or event space)
- Provide Plates, Cups, Utensils
- Invite Your Friends and Family
- Provide alcohol, if that works with your crowd
What Rebuild South Sudan Does:
- Share the Story (provide the presentation)
- Provide the Food (authentic South Sudanese food that Katie learned to cook in South Sudan last fall).
- Provide the Music/Soundtrack
- Set up a Table: Handmade South Sudanese wares and art in honor of South Sudan, more information about how to be a part of Rebuild South Sudan.
- Bring the Projector
- EmC the Evening (optional- as it makes sense for the tone of our evening with you)
- Build the Email Invites for the Evening (optional-as it makes sense for the tone of our evening with you)
How The Evening Works
While each event will run a little differently according to our host, here is a rough outline and starting point.
- Guests Arrive: South Sudanese Music playing, Beverages, Mingling
- Welcome, Short Video and Announce Dinner
- Dinner and Mingling
- Special Guest Speaker: Michael Mayen
- Desserts and South Sudanese Coffee, Mingling and Answering Questions
- Optional: Some hosts may be equiped to set up a drum circle
Where Does Money Raised Go?
Money raised from the event goes directly into our programs, which are community driven initiatives. First and foremost we are serious about finishing the school.
- Education: finishing the school which serves 573 girls and boys, responding to the needs of teachers
- Peace and Conflict Transformation: We work with teachers in the area on leadership development and non-violent communications.
- Economic Development: Community leaders have asked us to look into economic development, finishing the boat (pictured below) which will support food systems, women’s goods to markets, delivery of health supplies, salaries to community leaders who are doing the work to coordinate activities on the ground
- Health: basic first aid for teachers, possibly delivery of malaria medication to Bor State Hospital
Michael Mayen stands with the boat being built in Juba.