1966 Dr Maulana Karenga decided that a celebration to highlight and honor African Americans was necessary, and in much needed time where so many social changes had already taken place. Meant to inspire African Americans who were working to progress past the oppression and limitations set in America, Kwanzaa became popular and celebrated by millions. A false preconception is that it was created to replace Christmas, but the holiday specifically runs from December 26th to January 1st, allowing each holiday their separate times.
Each day is associated with 7 principles: Omoja (unity), kujichagulia(self determination), Ujima (responsibility and collective works), Ujamaa (cooperative economics), Nia ( a sense of purpose), kuumba (creativity) and Imani (faith).
The event took place on Decemeber 29thon the day Ujamaa, the fourth day of Kwanzaa which represented cooperative economics. Applying it in action means to support businesses that give back to the community. Vendors were allowed to bring in their products, ranging from jewelry to custom pictures.. Attendees were able to enjoy food, live music, poetry and more as they celebrated the African culture. Some even tested their vocal skills, as a karaoke portion was also a part of the festivities. In its 57 years of existence, Northcott has provided many services to the community to over 10,000 residents. Services include job training, GED program, emergency clothing and a multitude of other services.
Hundreds gathered at the event leaving with smiles, free scarves, hats, and a sense of pride in the neighborhood and heritage. Happy Kwanzaa and a year of prosperity to all.