On the 30th of May 1930, a star was born, and a gift was given to us from God in the life of Beatrice Kabatabazi Bitamazire.
To many people she is known as “Auntie Ateenyi” while to some children she is known as “Akaisiki”
Whatever you call her, we can all say she is a gift to us.
Ateenyi’s story begun in Mwibaale village in Kabarole district near Fort Portal Town. The only child of Juliana Bitamazire, a registered nurse and Stanley Bitamazire, who was the first Inspector of Schools in Western Region. She was both treasured and cherished by her parents. Ateenyi grew up and started school, attending Haibaale Primary school, where she met some of her lifetime friends like Margret Karamagi. From there she went to Kyebambe Girls Secondary school. This school shaped her into the role model she became. She had fond memories of the teachers and the Matron Peresikira.
She was also very active in sports including running. She participated with her friends in the annual competitions at the school.
Her father, an inspector of Schools inspired her to work hard and pursue her studies as a teacher majoring in Home Economics at Nsube College (Now Stella Maris College Nsube). She furthered her training at Mt. St Carmel in Israel adding an international dimension to her skills and experience
After school, Ateenyi went back to her beloved school Kyebambe Girls Secondary School with the desire to impart the very knowledge she had acquired to young girls who would in the future mother the nation. She loved it so much that she excelled greatly at it. Ateenyi was a role model to many of the girls that she taught because she was so smart, and some chose to be teachers just to follow in her footsteps.
The Girls school opened a Home Economics demonstration house where the students were taught practically good etiquette…how to prepare a balanced meal for a family, how to cook food-even on a firewood stove, how to set a table with all the trimmings and how to treat each other in a home and at the table. Students got to act out parts of a father and mother and all the other family members.
This demonstration house still stands in Kyebambe Girls secondary School. Because of her dedication and excellence exhibited at her work in the school, one of her teachers introduced her to the officials in Luzira Women’s Prison where she started to teach the women wardens how to prepare balanced meals for themselves and the prisoners. The prison was later moved to Mbale where Ateenyi also served a long time. She loved people and loved seeing every person change for the better.
Ateenyi later in her career worked with the Ministry of Culture as a Senior Officer for Community Development. Here she trained many women in home management which also extended to ways of how to improve their household incomes. She trained women in income generating skills such as farming, bead work and sewing. She then retired from public service as a distinguished and award-winning senior Officer. She was later headhunted by the office of the First Lady to kick start a Tailoring Skilling Project. She continued making an impact working with the First Lady, Mrs. Janet K. Museveni in UWESO at the Tailoring project for several years. There they trained orphaned and vulnerable girls in acquiring skills for better livelihood. In the early 1990s, she moved back home to Fort Portal, scaled down her official engagements, and became a key member, trainer, and pastor at the Kabarole Christian Fellowship.
Her extraordinary dedication to selflessly serve her community did not escape the eyes of national leaders culminating into an official recognition and medal award by H.E. President Museveni in 2017 at Kololo celebration grounds.
Ateenyi was known as a pioneer in many things starting with being among the first Girl Guides in Uganda. She ushered many down this path and was recognized in 2008 for the contribution she made to The Uganda Girl Guides Association. She was given an Award by Mrs. Janet K. Museveni the Patron of Uganda Girl Guides Association. Ateenyi remained a true girl guide, always prepared.
Ateenyi is survived by her daughter, Julianne.
Julianne is married to Joseph Birungi, and they have two wonderful children: Josepha, and Joshua.
Here gathered, there are many(biological and non-biological) who considered Ateenyi a beloved mother figure.
Burial will take place at their home in Mwibaale Village (5kilo meters off Kamwenge Road) Kabarole District on Thursday,24th August 2023 starting at 10:00am.
Informed are; Relatives, Friends and In-laws.
MAY HER SOUL REST IN ETERNAL PEACE