KampalaCentral RegionUganda

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FEMRITE - Uganda Women Writers Association was founded by Hon. Mary Karoro Okurut in 1995. Hon. Karoro is currently the President of FEMRITE, a position that was conferred upon her to recognize her contribution as the Founding Mother of the organization. Indeed, she is fondly called Mother-Hen by all members of FEMRITE. The First Meeting that gave birth to FEMRITE was held in Mary's Office at Makerere University where she was at the time a lecture in the Literature Department. It was attended by Lillian Tindyebwa, Ayeta Anne Wangusa, Dr Susan Kiguli, Martha Ngabirano, Margaret Ntakalimaze, Rosemary Kyarimpa, Hilda Twongyeirwe, Philomena Rwabukuku and Judith Kakonge (rip). The women were very excited by Hon. Karoro's proposals and more meetings were held to brainstorm. At the beginning of 1996 participation in the initial meetings had expanded and they relocated to National Theatre, the Greenroom. Winnie Munyarugyerero, another of the early FEMRITE members donated the first straw mat that FEMRITE members sat on during meetings. More members were recruited and that was when Goretti Kyomuhendo, one of Uganda's literary icons also joined to become the first Coordinator of the organization. On 3rd May 1996, FEMRITE was officially launched at an event that was presided over by Prof Kathleen Kendal, an editor and Writer from South Africa and Ms Juddy Batterman, the then Director of American Centre. The theme of the Launch events was; Women and the Word: Empowerment through the Quill. The launch attracted several pressmen and women. Several literary personalities also attended. Notable among them were Prof Rose Mbowa, Dr Kasalina Matovu, Prof Timothy Wangusa, Dr Okello Ogwang, Alex Bangirana and others. In 1997 FEMRITE relocated to Plot 18 Shimon Road, where she acquired her first office with seed funding from the Humanistic Institute for Social Development (HIVOS). To-date FEMRITE has close to 100 members although those actively writing are about 50 members.

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