BAYIMBA (Cultural Foundation) was established in June 2006 (followed by formal registration on the 27th of November 2007) following a comprehensive exploration of the state of arts and culture in Uganda and East Africa.
The organization sought to bring about change in the status quo of arts and culture in Uganda and East Africa: envisioning a vibrant sector that is creative, professional and viable and contributes to social and economic development, it embarked on a deliberate effort to uplift the standards of arts and culture.
BAYIMBA’s operations started in 2008, with the first multi-arts festival of its kind in Uganda coupled with a number of artistic skills training workshops.
With various organizational strategic plans (2010, 2015, 2022) programme activities have been implemented ever since
Over the years, BAYIMBA has grown its calendar of festivals and events – with the signature Bayimba International Festival of the Arts; a special Kampala International Theatre Festival; DOADOA l East African Performing Arts Market; The Amakula International Film Festival and the most recent International Reggae Fest – in addition to the Bayimba Academy, with regular workshops and training.
It became clear that the organization significantly needed a much larger, multi-media arts space that can sufficiently accommodate its programme with more visitors and higher profile artists.
In 2017, BAYIMBA purchased Lunkulu – a leafy 92-acre semi-attached island located at 0° 10′ 35.0364” N, 32° 53′ 8.8584” E in the midst of a lush environment at the shores of Lake Victoria in Mukono and Buikwe districts, well away but easily reached from the capital and other urban centres (50 km from Kampala and 60 km from Jinja by road, 40 mins from Entebbe by boat).
It is here – within the exceptional setting of LUNKULU island – that a new and unique ecologically sensitive cultural ecosystem will come to life, a home for inspiration and collaboration that is part and parcel of rural life, hosting an exciting range of physical spaces for training, production, performance and exhibition.
Bayimba’s mission has always been to contribute to the social, economic, and human development in Uganda through the cultivation of a vibrant arts sector. The completion of the Bayimba Centre for Visual and Performing Arts realizes this mission by providing artists with a professional, holistic safe space and platform that will serve as an unprecedented hub of artistic collaboration and creative development in East Africa. Ultimately, the Centre is the true embodiment of Bayimba’s mission to sustainably uplift the arts and culture of Uganda and Africa at large.