The AWLI gave me a space to learn and understand Feminism.

In the past, every time I heard about feminism, I would imagine a rude woman who went about ridiculing men and setting things on fire. However, I have come to learn that being a feminist means being the kind of person who cares that women are treated right and given equal opportunities with men in every area of their lives. 

As someone passionate about leadership, I identified the different challenges that our current leaders in parliament have not yet addressed and decided to contest for the position of Lady Councilor under Katete Ward Mbarara. I stood for the position so that the collective voices of women could be given a platform and listened to by duty bearers.

Although I did not succeed during the National Resistance Movement (NRM) primary elections, the African Women’s Leadership Institute boosted my confidence to articulate issues while campaigning. The lessons I obtained in the Feminist Theory module improved my confidence and the ability to sell my ideas. This gave me solace and I plan to run for the position of the Woman Member of Parliament for Mbarara City in the year 2026.

Most importantly, I learnt that money alone does not change things; with the right mentorship, and networks we can lead by example, work on ideas that change lives, and attract resources that we need. 

Society marginalizes women which hinders us from exploring our full potential. I have since realized that we can chase our dreams by starting small and growing to create change at the national and global levels. 

Thanks to the African Women’s Leadership Institute, I am now part of a network of young women with whom I can share ideas and lean on. This synergy has paid off as we build and support each other’s activities. The networks also keep me abreast of news and innovations, which I am grateful for because it has boosted my cross-cultural experience and understanding.

Judith Ninsiima

Uganda