„Game Changers - Women in Agriculture“ Award winner 2020

Akech Manyuat Gong
© World Vision/Cecil Laguardia

Akech Manyuat Gong

Lead farmer (*1975)

South Sudan


Nominating organization:
World Vision

Food security for vulnerable households, especially mothers and children, in Gogrial West District, South Sudan


“Akech Manyuat Gong has filled the word resilience with life in a comprehensive manner. She lives in South Sudan, a country facing recurrent draughts and conflicts. Against this difficult backdrop, Akech Manyuat Gong always stood strong and moved forward in her effort to make a living, initially as a small farmer growing vegetables. A severe challenge, given the harsh conditions of extended dry seasons in South Sudan.


She experimented with innovative agricultural cultivation practices and finally succeeded in producing excise harvest, allowing her to sell produce locally. With her determination and commitment, she became a self-made female entrepreneur who is autonomous and can manage to pay her children's school fees. Akech Manyuat Gong's sustainable farming approach is well transferable to other regions and countries. By telling her story and sharing knowledge, she inspires other women to also grow and sell their own farm products. At the same time, she uses her individual success story to advocate gender equality and rights for women in a male dominated society.


She helps women to seek opportunities in the agri-business sector and encourages them to join farmer organizations with a still male dominated membership. She believes structures must be changed from within. Akech Manyuat Gong does not only want to change the system, she strives for a change of mindsets, values and mentality in a very demanding environment. She is therefore honored as a game changer by the jury.”


"Now that my effort has globally been recognized and acknowledged, I will superfluous exert more commitments and determinations to advocate for needy and disadvantaged, children and women, and I’m certain that my energies will not only be significant and visible in my village but rather to the whole young nation South Sudan, Africa continent and at the global community."

Akech Manyuat Gong

Extract from the nomination

“Akech Manyuat Gong is a local “Game Changer”, pushing for rural development, women's advancement and children's prospects for a better life, without hunger and extreme poverty. She is a model farmer who leads by example, is eager to pass on skills to other farmers and constantly motivates them to devote some of their time to communal affairs.
Besides establishing a farming demonstration plot, the nominee took the initiative to plant and raise mango seedlings in her compound, thus generating income to cater for her family needs such as paying school fees for her two school going children, medication and clothing. (…) Further, the nominee has been instrumental in helping women become marketers of their farm products, and results have been seen in Kuac South Market where women have increasingly been seen selling their farm products unlike before.”


"Women like Ms Gong are important role models for their children, their families and their communities. They are important for the development of a society for politics, but also for the economic development of a community that empowers women and gives them the position they deserve".

Silvia Holten, Speaker World Vision Deutschland