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February 21 2017

Arterial Network Uganda | Weaving a Tapestry of Ideas for a Sustainable Sector

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Introducing the Creative Sector in Uganda

The cultural and creative industry in Uganda has experienced an unprecedented resurgence during the past decade. There is abundant evidence of the prevailing growth on all fronts, including a proliferation of institutions that offer arts courses; introductions of hitherto non-existent course units in arts - producing countless numbers of trained arts professionals annually; an explosion of arts events from only a handful a decade ago to several each month; a growth of funding streams from the corporate world and foreign foundations; increased international cultural exchanges that have facilitated overseas travel for cultural practitioners, and much more. We can rightly say that the sector is experiencing exceptional moments.

However, this momentous growth has come with a new set of challenges that were not anticipated. Coalescing the vibrant sector into a unified force that can progress in a shared direction, in a manner that can help its leverage for available opportunities, has not yet matched the sector’s momentum. There have been some solo and even group efforts to forge a semblance of unity through the formation of guilds in different disciplines, but few of these have survived the test of time or been able to operate successfully due to numerous factors.

In view of the above, it is very critical that cultural practitioners and arts managers operating in Uganda raise their sights above and beyond the prevailing energy and excitement, and begin to focus on the strategies that will sustain this dynamic going forward. It is crucial that we begin to bring our creative minds together and weave a tapestry of ideas that will guarantee the future development of the sector. This is the particular focus that will inform the work of the recently elected Arterial Network Uganda National Steering Committee during their tenure over the next two years.

Summary of Arterial Network Uganda Activities 2016

Monthly Copyrights Seminars
National Theatre Kampala

In 2016, Arterial Network Uganda Chapter invited artists to a series of seminars on copyright and intellectual property matters. We used a sector-specific copyright sensitisation approach so that we could guarantee maximum returns in terms of the stakeholders’ proper understanding of the subject. The seminars were facilitated pro bono by copyright legal expert Norman Mbabazi at the National Theatre in Kampala. These sessions will continue for the foreseeable future as the Chapter recruits more members into the fold.

SHIRIKA Capacity Building Programme
Goethe Zentrum Kampala
19 - 21 September 2016

Created in partnership between Arterial Network and Cultural Development Trust and with seed funding from Africalia, SHIRIKA’s vision is an African creative sector that is healthy, thriving economically and socially thanks to the sustainability, performance and governance of its organisations. The methodology and content of the programme is designed as a continuous and growing process from the input of both experts and beneficiaries. The main trainer for the workshops has been Maria Kint, founder and director of the Cultural Development Trust, who has been assisted by the participation of key local arts practitioners in each country.







Eight organisations took part in the inaugural session in Kampala and greatly benefitted from the programme. These organisations represented a diverse field of participants from branding, dance, youth empowerment and literature to mention a few. The challenge for most of the organisations was financial management and by the end of the training, the participants had a better sense of what their various organisations needed. With the post training activities winding down, we are confident that the participants will be able to sustainably grow their organisations for the foreseeable future.

Annual General Assembly
Uganda National Cultural Centre
9 December 2016



In December 2016, Arterial Network Uganda Chapter hosted its members and was also able to hold elections for the National Steering Committee. Nathan Kiwere, the outgoing Chairperson, thanked all of the members present for their continued support for the Chapter. The new committee, which is well represented across the different genres of the arts, includes the following Arterial Network Uganda members:

- Samuel Lutaaya Tebandeke (Film, theatre, dance) - Chairperson
- Teddy Nabisenke (Visual Art) - Vice-Chairperson
- Isabella Biira (Literature, music) - Secretary
- Godfrey Musinguzi (Film) - Publicity
- Edward Waddimba (Visual Art) - Treasurer
- Sam Okello (Dance) - Committee Member
- Isaac Kuddzu (Film, theatre) - Committee Member

The committee went straight to work and has so far had two meetings to plot the way forward. The new committee will build on the foundation set up by the previous committees with the mandate to build membership and implement awareness and recruitment campaigns to potential members.

With this new team fully orientated to the Arterial Network continental body’s work and policies, there is no doubt that it will continue to draw from the strength of the Secretariat and work towards building a more sustainable working environment for the creative and cultural industries in Uganda.

Samuel Lutaaya Tebandeke
Chairperson Arterial Network Uganda

Contact Arterial Network Uganda by clicking here.

Photo Credit

Arterial Network Uganda

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