Her Royal Highness the Nnabagereka of Buganda Sylvia Nagginda has called upon parents in the diaspora to integrate cultural heritage into their children’s grooming and upbringing in order to enable their children to excel in all spheres of life.
Nnabagereka who was speaking as chief guest at the Royal Dinner to launch Ekisaakaate in Manchester over the weekend touched upon the characteristic example of Asians in the diaspora that are engraved in their cultures experiencing success in all aspects of life.
From one end of the floor to the other hundreds of Ugandans attended the event at Vermillion Banqueting Hall in Manchester. There were over 500 Ugandans from Manchester and surrounding cities like Liverpool, Coventry, Leeds, Sheffield, Birmingham, Scotland, London to mention but a few.
Nnabagereka who was accompanied by Namasole (Mother to the King) Margaret Nagawa further appealed to the parents to familiarize their children with their mother tongues reasoning that diaspora children who are unfamiliarized with their language always find themselves losing their true identity. “They pursue a British persona, yet it’s nothing in itself, and henceforth isolates them and when they travel to Uganda, they find they cannot speak their own language which in turn makes them feel alienated.” she added.
She challenged parents to bear the role as the first teachers of their children illustrating how this gives their children a good foundation. “Parents are the first teachers, If you read a lot as parents, your children will automatically be inspired to read as well”, said the Queen. She further urged parents to address their children by clan names since it draws them closer to their homeland.
The Nnabagereka explained how our behaviour as Baganda is universal and compliant with other cultures. She reassured the parents in Manchester and neighbouring cities that bringing up a child with values of Buganda tradition will neither stop them from assimilating into British culture or integrating within the British way of life.
“They pursue a British persona, yet it’s nothing in itself, and henceforth isolates them and when they travel to Uganda, they find they cannot speak their own language which in turn makes them feel alienated.”
Nnabagereka on the importance of cultural heritage
According to the Chief organiser and deputy Kabaka’s representative in UK and Republic of Ireland, Enock Mayanja Kiyaga, the royal dinner was the climax of the 3-day camp which started on 29th-31st May 2019 with 85 participants ranging from the age of 5-19 years at St. Philips Primary School in Manchester. One of the participants, Juliet Mpofu was from Zimbabwe.
The participants were trained in a wide range of subjects and added to their store of knowledge in good behaviour, preparing kiganda meal, financial literacy, sexual education, good conduct in a home, art and craft to mention but a few. We then directed our attention to knife crime in a special session conducted by officers from the Greater Manchester police.
Three trainers from the Nnabagereka Development Fund (NDF) that included, Andrew Mukiibi, Henry Bogere, and Elizabeth Walugembe took the lead. Nnabagereka held a special meeting session with the parents on the third and last day of the training.
Guests at the royal dinner were entertained by the Ganda Boys and Flavia Wamala, daughter to the late Elly Wamala. Meanwhile, the Ugandan High Commissioner to the UK, H.E Julius Moto who commended the good work done by Nnabagereka for the last 10 years of training both the girls and boys into transitioning to responsible adults. Other guests included the Kabaka’s Representative in UK and Republic of Ireland, Ronald Lutaaya, the deputy Ugandan UK High Commissioner Amb. John Mugerwa, the representative of Emoriror in the UK, Michael Okwalinga to mention but a few.
Last year at a dinner with Ugandans in Manchester, the idea of the Ekisaakaate was mooted. At the event, Ms Nagginda told Ugandans; “Buganda tradition and morals have been of great importance to instilling morals in children to prepare them to face challenges in life.”
The 12th Annual Ekisaakaate Kya Nnabagereka was last year hosted by St Joseph of Nazareth High School in Kavule-Katende, on Kampala- Masaka highway.
It is a leadership development and mentorship camp that uses cultural education and heritage to reshape the traditions.
Nnabagereka Development Foundation
Founded by Her Royal Highness Sylvia Nagginda, the Nnabagereka (Queen) of the Kingdom of Buganda, the Nnabagereka Development Foundation – NDF – is a charitable organisation that leverages culture for development.
While the Nnabagereka Development Foundation is an independently registered organisation, it is part of the Buganda Kingdom structure which provides effective mechanism and channels for the Foundation’s development interventions.
Since its founding in 2000, the Foundation has actively been involved in making a positive difference in the lives of children, youth and women in Uganda and elsewhere.
Part of what makes the Foundation unique is that it draws on positive cultural values from the rich culture and traditions of the Kingdom of Buganda and balances these values with contemporary ones.