The Uganda Women Writers Association (Femrite) has organized the first writers’ caravan in the country.
Christine Ssemwogerere, representing Kampala Capital City Authority Executive Director Jennifer Musisi, on Friday at Femrite offices in Kampala, flagged off nine writers that will take a literary journey into northern and eastern Uganda.
Femrite Coordinator Hilda Twongyeirwe explained that each of the nine writers would have a home base community where they would write, read, recite, perform, dialogue and debate in both English and the local language.
“The rationale of the caravan is to create a shared space for conversation between writers and their communities. Most of the time writers are published outside their communities and so their value is lost to these communities.
Maybe the communities do not even know that their daughter/son is a writer. It is not the same as when one is a doctor and all villagers look for him/her for medicine or medical care. Yet, almost all writers draw their inspiration from their communities,” she explained.
At the end of the caravan, each writer will create a literary product in both English and their local language, which will be compiled into a multilingual publication.
The writers and their base communities are: Mwalimu Austin Bukenya (Kampala), Glydah Namukasa (Wakiso), Nakisanze Ssegawa (Luweero), Beatrice Lamwaka (Gulu), Julius Ocwinyo (Oyam), Laury Ochien (Lira), Betty Kituyi (Kapchorwa), Timothy Wangusa (Mbale) and Peter Kagayi (Jinja).
Twongyeirwe said the writers would meet communities in schools, universities and other venues and distribute promotional literary materials that have been provided by Fountain Publishers and National Book Trust of Uganda (Nabotu).
Some of the venues are Gulu University, February 10 at 5pm; Lira bus park on February 12, at 11am; Mbale University, February 13, at 2pm; Sippi falls, February 14 at 4pm; and Jinja public library, February 15, at 5pm.
The caravan concludes on February 17, with public readings at the Uganda museum starting at 5pm. While the caravan is financially sponsored by the Prince Claus Fund of Netherlands, KCCA has partnered with Femrite to flag off and monitor and evaluate progress of the 11-day journey.