When Ian Mark Kimanje, a Ugandan, first met Emily Devries, a Canadian citizen, they never thought they will one day end up as husband and wife. Their meeting was strictly about business.
At the time of their first encounter, Kimanje, founder of African Children’s Television and Film Foundation (ACTFF), was working on a documentary film for kids. Devries, who works for Kids’ Media Centre in Toronto, wanted to do business with Kimanje.
“I was not in Uganda at that time, so I took a plane and flew back to meet Emily. We met at the National theater to discuss business,” Kimanje recalls.
During their first meeting, they talked about business and shared dreams for the future of kid’s media industry.
The meeting, Kimanje says, was professional. But something else excited him more about her. They both had strong Christian faith.
As the business meeting ended, the pair exchanged contacts and stayed in touch, during which Kimanje told Emily that he wanted to see her again.
“I sent her a text saying it was a shame that we didn’t even take a photo to show her boss that we did meet. That paved way for our first date,” says Kimanje
And before any of them could even realize it, they were in love. Emily says she was attracted to Kimanje, same way he was attracted to her.
“He is a person full of amazing ideas. I find them exhilarating,” she says.
Kimanje soon approached Emily’s dad to ask for her hand in marriage and he agreed, after which they arranged for their wedding.
Today, Kimanje and Emily are happily married despite disapproval from a few African girls who think Kimanje did a mistake by marrying a white woman.