By Hussein Kiganda
The Imara Girls Festival, an all-girls event aimed at amplifying the voices of young girls in the country, was inaugurated at the Forum for Women in Democracy (FOWODE) offices in Ntinda, Kampala on September 7, 2023.
This launch attracted various prominent female figures, including singer Lydia Jazmine and Hannah Karema Tumukunde, the reigning Miss Uganda 2023. Also present were Maria Odido, an entrepreneur, and Solome Nakaweesi, a Pan-African feminist activist and the board chairperson at FOWODE.
During her address at the launch, Nakaweesi revealed that the festival, scheduled for September 16, 2023, at Kati Kati Grounds in Kampala, is designed to amplify the voices of young women, connect them with their role models, and engage in interactive sessions.
“This festival will bring these girls together, providing them with the opportunity to meet their female idols, express their thoughts, and receive advice on navigating the world as women, among other valuable insights,” she stated.
To be held under the theme Interrogating The Diversity of Spaces for Women in Politics, Economics, Arts, and Business, Nakaweesi announced that a panel discussion would be held, from which attendees will have the chance to gain insights from seasoned leaders, mentors, and role models who will share their experiences and wisdom, inspiring girls to dream big and pursue their aspirations.
Asked whether it’s an only-girls event where boys are not accepted, she said the boys too are much needed as a session to talk to them about how to handle girls would be conducted so that these well-prepared girls do not go out and bump into the unprepared boys.
Despite being a free-entry event, Henry Rugamba, the co-chief, marketing and fundraising officer at Imara Women Centre, mentioned that the proceeds from the event would support the establishment of the country’s first women’s useum and several other initiatives aimed at empowering women and girls.
The event is set to be headlined by female artistes such as Lilian Mbabazi, Martha Mukisa, Naava Grey, Irene Ntale, Gabie Ntaate, Lydia Jazmine, Karole Kasita, Sandra Suubi and Sheebah Karungi.