On the 15th of June I was announced as the MILEAD fellow2015. It was in the morning when I got an email informing me that I was selected as one of the most emerging young African women leaders. I didn’t believe my eyes when I read this email because I had waited for so long for this response from the Moremi imitative. I always told myself that I deserve this opportunity and always asked God to make it possible for me to be part of this program. So on this day I got so excited and could not believe it. I believed in myself the more and felt confident about myself.
As the days went by, I received an email with my ticket to Ghana from Moremi so the long awaited day came and I had to travel to Ghana. what got me so excited was when the other 26 girls started to arrive I felt that it was real. We were to reside at the University of Legon Ghana
The next morning Saturday we had our orientation, introduced ourselves together with Moremi Team the and then we had dinner. Sunday was our opening ceremony where we had different people strong and influential women. The ceremony went well and in the evening we started our personal presentations. This was a good experience because it gave us room to know each other beyond our names and the countries we come from. It gave me an understanding on the importance of women in the development of Africa and the world at Large. So in The innocent league the Organisation am working with, I will empower the young women am working with to be positive about their capabilities and understand their role in developing Africa and Uganda at large.
In the first week we had sessions that really opened my mind widely in terms of equality and human rights where I got to know that all human beings are born equal but we become different because of the different socializations and life conditions we encounter in our lives where some people get diseases, disabilities rich, poor and many more which bring differences in human beings. We also had a session about Pan Africanism which was a term that I always heard but never understood we discussed things like the African Union and identifying some of the African problems where we found some being poor governance, poverty, poor mindset of people, Education, ignorance and many others. And The Innocent League will work towards addressing some of these problems
I also got enlightened on the term feminism which interested me a lot because of its concepts. I also got to know that it is a very good term and in my own understanding I have come to define feminism as having equal rights and opportunities between men and women and it calls for mutual support for both men and women though it’s a woman cause and championed by women
The whole idea of elevator pitches was so great. We were given small papers that had names of different personalities and we were asked to get into pairs where one personal was to pick a paper and acts or role plays the person whose name is written in that paper and guess who I picked, Oprah Winfrey one my role models and the other person was to do an elevator pitch to Oprah who was me in this case. I felt speechless stepping in Oprah’s shoes but it challenged me a lot because I had to ask myself if I was worth role-playing Oprah because she is such a success and inspiring woman. So I also commit myself to work hard and be a successful woman
Writing skills were so great especially when we learned many writing skills and types and the whole issue of just drawing our life journey more like dreams was also good because it helped me know that their so many ways one can express herself not necessary writing but putting your expression in drawing
This opportunity has really shown me the importance of team building and team work and the all idea of sisterhood.
We also did our Michange projects and these are projects that we committed to work on after the three week summit in Ghana. We are to implement these projects when we go back to our countries as a way of impacting on our communities. And my Michange project is the Infected and affected campaign one of the six campaigns in The innocent League Uganda.
We had a lot more other educative session like on time management, domestic violence, entrepreneurship, project planning, ending child marriage and many others. We also had a summit where I was one of the panelists the summit was about sexual reproductive health and rights of young people and I spoke in regard about SRHR in regard to young people living with HIV. We also had another dialogue about ending child marriage where we had a number of panelists this dialogue also
We also visited many places like the World Bank in Ghana where I got to know about what the World Bank. It is such an amazing place to be I learnt a lot
I thank the Moremi Intitiative for such a great opportunity they gave me. Take this opportunity to thank Mawuli Dake one of the amazing men I have met in my life I was very inspired by you Mawuli. Thank you Mame Afon your such an inspiring feminist and African Woman. Lastly thank my 26 sisters MILEAD Fellows 2015
Ms. Refilwe Kerekang [Botswana], Ms. Véronique A. Tonoukouen [Benin], Ms. Erica Matasi Gateka [Burundi], Ms. Monique Tangah Kwachou [Cameroon], Ms. Betel Bekele Birhanu [Ethiopia], Ms. Haddy Jonga [Gambia], Ms. Baaba Gyakyewa Jackson [Ghana], Ms. Edem Doreen Asimadu [Ghana], Ms. Stephanie Musho Agengo [Kenya], Ms. Sianeh Farwenee [Liberia/ Mozambique], Ms. Marriam Lally [Malawi], Ms. Chilera Chifundo [Malawi], Ms. Agaichatou Dicko [Mali], Ms. Mary Temiloluwa Ajayi [Nigeria], Ms. Zeinabou Moussa Kaka [Niger], Ms. Davephine Tholley [Sierra Leone], Ms. Elizabeth Achu Jervase [South Sudan], Ms. Canthar May Ntuli [South Africa], Ms. Rowan Faisal [Sudan], Ms. Dorothy Mrema [Tanzania], Ms. Bumba Malambo [Zambia], Ms. Florence Takaedesa [USA/Zimbabwe], Ms. Mary C. Namagambe [Denmark/ Uganda],Ms. Monica Habia- [Ghana/USA] I love you sisters so much and you will forever be in my heart.
I can’t foget the Moremi Volunteers and interns for the love and support you showed me.
I have really had un told experience in the Moremi Initiative as a MILEAD Fellow 2015 I have found out that Africa is rich when I met the 26 emerging young African women leaders, I loved Africa the more and I believe that As Africans, we have the power and capacity to change our Africa. Many times we are associated with diseases, poverty, illiteracy and ignorance but I have come understand that these things don’t define our Africa. Africa as got its past and its present but the advantage we have is that Africa has got a spotless future there is nothing written on Africa’s future that’s why We Africans should start painting the future of our Africa. There are many good things and good people in Africa a lot is happening in Africa besides diseases, poverty, illiteracy and ignorance. Many times people say that “Africa is the land of beauty” As Africans, let’s find the beauty in Africa, let’s define our Africa.
By Nansumba Winnie