11 Incredible TED Talks by Ugandan women that will Inspire You


In this 21st century, you don’t need to move further than your couch to get inspired thanks to TED. Since its inception in 1984, the global TED forum has grown in appeal as a meeting place for thinkers, innovators, experts, and entrepreneurs.

Over the years, TED.com has showcased a number of speakers from Africa. They have introduced and led discussions about a range of topics, from investment in the continent to the impact of entrepreneurship and innovation, and the best approach to economic reform.

We have selected what we believe are the top eleven must-watch TED Talks from Ugandan women, selected because of the influence they have had – and the impact they could have on Uganda and beyond.

1. Called to Serve| HRH The Nnabagereka (Queen) Sylvia Nagginda Luswata

Her Royal Highness, Sylvia Nagginda Luswata the Nnabagereka (Queen) of Buganda Kingdom remains one of the most inspiring women in Uganda. Through her Nnabagereka  Development Foundation, She has played a major role in sensitizing and mobilizing the general population on issues of education, health, poverty eradication, culture preservation, and has graciously supported and empowered marginalized groups of youth, women, and persons with disabilities. Her talk below is about her journey from being a girl to a queen.

2. Why It means so much for me to be alive| Winnie Sanyu- Sseruma

In this beautiful story of life and hope, Winnie’s talk challenges our societies, living in denial and avoiding discussing the difficult issues with our own families to wake up and smell the coffee, imploring us to do more to celebrate those that are lucky to be still living with HIV and to keep advocating for treatment, prevention and possible…a cure!

3. Why your skills are best suited for agri-business | Victoria Sekitoleko

Victoria Sekitoleko, the former Minister of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries in Uganda emphasizes in her talk that you do not have to touch the soil to invest in Agribusiness. Each of the skills you posses can be invested in the most valued business in the world – Agriculture; because we all keep eating!
4. Women and Spaces | Mildred Apenyo

This talk by Mildred is about the right to space, the right to freedom and body ownership. Told from the perspective of Mildred Apenyo, it is about the way women in Uganda (Kampala) experience day to day life. It segments spaces into three parts: Public, Shared/activity-specific and Personal spaces. “If anybody is looking at you, tell them, FREE ME!”

5. Discover the magic within you | Wamunga Nabifo

Wamunga’s real-life story, has taught her that there is never a magical moment in life. What one needs to do is look within and rediscover themselves. You have the power to make things happen, you are the momentum! This talk is about the uncertainties and anxiety one may experience in anticipation of a magical moment in life.

6. The Power of Empathy in Leadership | Carol Beyanga

Carol the Managing Editor of The Daily Monitor, shares her story of how empathy Vs reprimand has turned into the greatest strength in her leadership career. From her experience, Carol has learnt that when people are abusive; sexually, emotionally, verbally… it is not a sensitivity issue, it is a leadership issue.

7. What is your identity? | Rebecca Rwakabukoza

In a very unique style, Rebecca examines the authenticity of storytelling and the preservation of women’s identity and historical happenings in Uganda today. Are there stories that are not being told?

8. A new year’s resolution: keeping your eye on government | Irene Ikoma

Irene the former Coordinator of Parliament Watch Uganda, an initiative of the Centre for Policy Analysis, emphasizes the need for citizens to start making new year resolutions for their country. She believes that this will create a more transparent, responsive, and accountable democracy by tracking ongoing legislative, budgeting, and other parliamentary processes and disseminating this information to the Ugandan public.

9. Change the narrative to a dialogue | Nancy Kacungira

Nancy needs no introduction. A US State Department Professional Fellow, Co-Founder of Blu Flamingo and the winner of the inaugural BBC World News Komla Award, Nancy gives a powerful talk questioning the Africa Rising narrative by showing why we need African-led dialogues to solve issues in Africa.

10. What you need to know about Dyslexia | Hope Nankunda
A Professional teacher and counselor with a wide experience in special needs education, Hope reveals the fact that you, your child or your colleague could be Dyslexic without easily being noticed.
The danger is; if not attended to with special attention, the effects are quite devastating.

11. How I choose to use social media for a positive impact | Esther Kalenzi

A recipient of the 2013 Heroine of the Year Young Achievers Award, Esther through her 40 Days over 40 Smiles Foundation (which turned 5 years this year), is one testimony of how social media can be used to create social impact. Her talk below explains how she has used social media to improve the lives of children in Uganda.