In Liberia, Mmonbeydo N.J. Harrell is one of two female candidates running in a competitive 11-candidate race to fill a seat representing her native county in the country’s House of Representatives.
Fueled by her passion for public service, the 32-year-old Mmonbeydo says she is not intimidated in the least.
Mmonbeydo — whose name means “one of you” in the Bassa language — has returned to Grand Bassa, a county in west-central Liberia, after a lifetime marked by violence and displacement.
In 1989, the outbreak of civil war forced Mmonbeydo and her family to abandon their home in Grand Bassa. They resettled in Monrovia, but by 1991 the war had reached their new doorstep, and, on the eve of her seventh birthday, Mmonbeydo’s family fled the country.