Kwanzaa The First Fruits Celebration Ujima Day

December 28, 2015


symbol_ujimaToday is the third day of Kwanzaa, a celebration of the principle Ujima, Collective Work and Responsibility: “The mutual responsibility to care for and assist each other in times of need, and to support each other’s aspirations and life’s goals.

The Ingathering

 On Ujima Day, the family ingathering centers on mutual aid and responsibility which family members have to each other. Family members recount the support they have received from family, friends and the community in general. It is important that parents stress and highlight examples of mutual aid, explaining that we all need each other and that the strength of the family is in the bonds of its relationships

BrotherhoodExplanation of Ujimasisterhood

 Historically, African American families have developed and thrived because of their reliance of each other and the community. The core meaning and practice of Ujma is the care and concern for others, an understanding that “I am because we are, and because we are, I am.” We exist, we achieve, and we flourish because of the support and sacrifice of others. In their sunset years, we care for our parents and grandparents because they cared for us when we were born and needed help. Mutual aid and responsibility serves as social insurance that in times of need, we will never be on our own. This is the principle which made possible the Underground Railroad, the African American Southern extended family, the Black Baseball Leagues, the formation and flourishing of black businesses, and the building and support of the traditional black colleges. To be sure, this principle hold the key to the progress of black people- excellence in education, family development, and black children thriving.


We remember and raised the names of our parents, grandparents and other loved ones who were part of the greatest generations. We also remember of loved ones who have recently passed. Their spirit guards us and guides us to in the path of righteousness.

Candle Lighting Activity

 Green candleEach day of Kwanzaa, the family lights one of the candles, which represents one of days and principles of Kwanzaa. On Ujima (Collective Work and Responsibility Day, we light the green candle. The green candle is symbolic of progress and prosperity. The lighting of this candle provides powerful lesson: Progress and prosperity (the green candle) for children and adults is dependent on effort and work (the red candle). Hence, we asked our children and youth, how much effort and work (red candle) are they willing to invest in your life and future.

Ujima Commitment

 Green Check MarkIn the context of the ingathering activity, family members evaluates what they have done to practice the Ujima principle, and commit to practicing this principle in the following year.

Ujima Family Activity

The Ujima activity is intended to reinforce the Ujima principle. Therefore, the family engages in a     collective activity of its choosing

Kwanzaa Karamu (The Feast)

 There is no special or mandatory food for Kwanzaa. The choice of food is strictly an individual family decision. You may choose to go out for the Kwanzaa meal, order out, or cook. The aim is to make it a special meal in the way you determine.



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