The Spectacular Launch of Jacqueline Asiimwe’s ‘Facing Mountains’ by Gloria Bwandungi

On the evening of July 5th, a fortunate group in Kampala was treated to a truly unique experience—the launch of Jacqueline Asiimwe’s second book, “Facing Mountains.” Hosted at the Metroplex Mall in Naalya, the venue’s transformation into a whimsical, nature-inspired setting was immediately apparent. Balloons, indoor grass, and a vibrant book display created an atmosphere brimming with anticipation.

From the start, it was clear that this was no ordinary book launch. Guests were invited to shed their shoes and feel the grass underfoot, adding a tactile, grounding element to the event. The space was filled with the soothing melodies of Kenneth Mugabi, complemented by colorful displays and a bookshelf selfie wall, all setting a celebratory tone.

Walking through a corridor adorned with personal photos from Jacqueline’s life, attendees discovered a charming cocktail area offering delightful treats like cupcakes, ice cream cones, and cookies, all with a mountain theme. The stage which was designed by Izaya the composer was inspired by an ancient Chinese art form called Jian Zhi commonly known as kirigami. This whimsical touch added to the sense of wonder and celebration.

As the evening unfolded, Jacqueline, accompanied by her parents, entered the venue wearing a stunning couture outfit conceptualized by Penelope Sanyu, and executed by Sua, evoking a sense of regal presence. The artistic ambiance was further enhanced by Mercy Bero’s beautiful artwork, which captivated the audience and added a layer of emotional depth to the event.

Dr. Miria Matembe, a powerful advocate for women’s rights in Uganda, opened the presentations with a moving speech about the importance of learning from one another. Maritza, a spoken word artist, followed with a stirring poem, “I am a woman,” challenging societal expectations and inspiring the audience. Lillian Nabbagalla’s choreography brought raw emotions to the surface, prompting introspection and connection among the attendees.

Jacqueline’s family shared touching stories and excerpts from her journals, tweets, and her previous book, “Letters to My Boys.” A heartfelt letter from her eldest son, Jotham, added an intimate glimpse into her personal journey, revealing the depth of her experiences and motivations.

Honorable Rhoda Nsibirwa Kalema’s congratulations highlighted the importance of documenting personal histories, asserting that “what is not written did not happen.” Jacqueline’s parents, Joy and Benoni Mugarura-Mutana, affectionately shared their pride and joy in her accomplishments, referring to her as their “parenting guinea pig” and a treasure.

In a particularly poignant moment, Jacqueline led the audience in a song that had inspired her during her climbs, blending humor with profound reflections on the human spirit. This performance offered a glimpse into the emotional and inspirational themes of “Facing Mountains.”

Lady Justice Tibatemwa-Ekirikubinza officially launched the book, invoking the Gayaza High School motto, “Never Give Up,” and encouraged Jacqueline to continue writing. The announcement was marked by sparkles shooting to the ceiling, creating a magical and celebratory climax to the event.

The launch of “Facing Mountains” was more than an event; it was an artistic celebration of resilience and authenticity. It showed that within the confines of Kampala, one can dream, soar, and share their unique story.

“Facing Mountains” recounts Jacqueline’s journey of climbing East Africa’s famous peaks and drawing parallels to personal and professional challenges. The book, with its cover photograph by Agandy Studios and design by Bwandungi at Papura, was brought to life by Paulo Mugarura and Fervent Creative Studios Ltd, edited by Paul Kisaakye and printed by Honey Badger Ltd. in Uganda.

The launch was a deeply moving experience, a testament to the power of storytelling and the resilience of the human spirit. It inspired all who attended to confront their own mountains, both literal and metaphorical, and to find strength in vulnerability and community. The book also came with a generous gift of well curated reading lists to go as far in the future as five years, what a gift!

Photos by Nyaika256 and Stoneimagez_

Event Production and Direction- Penelope Sanyu

Branded gifts – Maraboxes, Lights/fireworks by GLP concepts & Innovation

Sound by DNJ audio, Cake – Bake for me.

Graphics by BrandFox & Stuart, cocktails by Kyakunywa system, Tea by urban Refreshments

Special Thanks to all the volunteers and everyone that made the event a blissful experience. If you are wondering how to get yourself this offering and are in Uganda, call Rewritten via +256704952399 and get yourself a gift. Our Kenyan friends can find the book at Soma Nami books or call +254768882726. Our international friends, book will be on Amazon soon . Apt media did a live stream and you can catch up via Thank you for being a wonderful travel companion along this journey of “Facing Mountains.”