About Award Winning Mongai Fankam.
Mongai Fankam is an award-winning Cameroonian American college student who is an activist and entrepreneur. Mongai has met with some World-renowned leaders in line with her education advocacy work. She has shared the stage with Dr. Joyce Banda former President of the Republic of Malawi, Dr. Ameenah Gurib Fakim, the former President of the Republic of Mauritius, Mrs. Leymah Gbowee 2011 Nobel Peace Prize winner, Mrs. Ligia Fonseca, First Lady of the Republic of Cape Verde, Mrs. Maureen Mwanawasa the former first lady of Zambia, Mrs. Jennifer Roberts former Mayor of Charlotte, and host of others. She has met with the former Prime Minister of Cameroon, His Excellency Mr. Yang Philemon. Mongai was invited to the US Senate to meet with Senator Chris Coons. In June 2018, Mongai was invited on an official visit to Cape Verde by the First Lady of Cape Verde. During this visit she met with President Fonseca and the US Ambassador to the Cape Verde. In the summer of 2022, Mongai was invited to Angola and Namibia by the First ladies of these countries, H.E Mrs. Ana Dias Lourenço and H.E Mrs. Monica Geingos respectively. She was also invited to Zambia by the former First lady Maureen Mwanawasa. During this trip she distributed backpacks to some well deserving children
At the tender age of 3, Mongai’s mother began taking her on mission trips to Cameroon, Africa. As Mongai got older, she realized that most of the children in rural areas of Cameroon had to walk miles to school and had no backpacks to carry their supplies in. Mongai decided to act, so she shared her concern with her teacher. Mongai wanted her schoolmates at Blythe Elementary School to donate backpacks and school supplies for the children of Cameroon on the condition that the kids come to school for a day without their backpacks! They would have to carry all their supplies and books in hand or in plastic bags just as the Cameroon children do every day. The principal at Blythe Elementary, staff and entire student body rallied their support for the cause and designated it as “No Backpack Day”! Since 2012, close to 40 schools in Charlotte have also joined in on “No Backpack Day” and more than 50000 backpacks with supplies have been given to the children of Angola, Benin, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Liberia, Malawi, Namibia, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Togo, Toronto, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe and locally in North Carolina. Mongai hopes that “No Backpack Day” will continue to spread to more schools so eventually no child will have to go to school carrying their books in plastic bags or in hand. Mongai recently launched her T-shirt line “Moh-tivity” fashions. Part of the proceeds from the T. Shirt is used to support No Backpack Day initiatives and other causes dear to her heart.
Now a college student, Mongai continues to be a quiet and powerful inspiration to millions around the world. She is developing into a true global community leader.
What is No Backpack Day?
No BackPack Day is a day that Kids in the US goes to school without their backpacks, carrying all their books and school supplies in their hands or in plastic bags so as to raise awareness for the millions of kids around the world who have to walk miles to school carrying their books and school supplies in their hands or in plastic bags because they cannot afford a backpack.
Awards and Achievements
-Mongai met with Senator Chris Coons of Delaware on May 8th, 2014 in Washington, DC. Senator Coons, who serves as Chairman of the Foreign Relations Subcommittee on African Affairs.
-On May 13th 2014, Mongai was recognized by the Mecklenburg County Board of Education.
– On May 14th, 2014, Mongai was recognized by President George H.W Bush Point of light Founder for her No BackPack day initiative.
-Mongai was honored on September 13, 2014, as “The 2014 Annie T. Doe Memorial Foundation Humanitarian Award Recipient”.
-2011 Nobel Peace Prize Winner, Mrs. Leymah Gbowee came to Charlotte on March 20th, 2015 to support and endorse Mongai.
-Mongai was featured in the 2014 June Edition of the Lake Norman Women Magazine as an amazing girl.
-September 2015, Mongai met with Dr. Joyce Banda, former President of the Republic of Malawi.
-On March 14th, 2016, Mongai received an award from 104.7FM as a kid who rocks.
– On January 27th 2017, Mongai was invited to the Woodrow Wilson Center for Global Citizenship in Washington DC by President Joyce Banda. Mongai and President Joyce Banda were part of a panel discussion to talk about the importance of advancing young girls to be global leaders.
-On March 8th 2017, Mongai and Charlotte Mayor Jennifer Roberts were Keynote speakers at the Charlotte International Women’s day event.
-On March 31st 2017, Her Excellency Ligia Fonseca, the First Lady of the Republic of Cape Verde came to Charlotte NC to endorse and support Mongai’s No Backpack day initiative.
_ On July 3rd, 2017, Mongai joined forces with Mpumi Nobiva, Ms. Oprah Winfreys’ Mentee to help raise awareness and funds for Domestic violence and AIDS. Ms. Oprah Winfrey pledged to match up to $100.000 of all funds raised.
- On March 20th 2018, Mongai was invited to Canada by the Fearless Woman, Fearless girl Conference. She was recognized for her humanitarian work and she launched her T. Shirt line to fight bullying.
- On April 28th, 2018, Mongai welcome Mrs. Maureen Mwanawasa, the former First Lady of Zambia and former President of OAFLA to charlotte NC as a keynote speaker to her annual event.
- On June 15th 2018, Mongai travelled to Cape Verde to honor the invitation of the Frist Lady of Cape Verde. During this time she and the First lady worked on humanitarian projects and she met with President Fonseca.
- On April11th, 2019, Mongai welcome Dr. Ameenah Gurib-Fakam, the former President of Mauritius to charlotte NC as a keynote speaker to her annual event.