Happy Kwanzaa from TwinStar Credit Union

Happy Kwanzaa from TwinStar Credit Union

First observed in 1966, Kwanzaa celebrates African-American culture and is observed annually from December 26 to January 1. It culminates with a communal feast, Karamu, which is held on the final day of the holiday. 

Kwanzaa draws its inspiration from African harvest traditions — and the word Kwanzaa is derived from the Swahili phrase, “matunda ya kwanza,” which means first fruits. First Fruit festivals still are common in various parts of Africa during the southern solstice.    

Families that celebrate Kwanzaa may decorate their homes with art, African cloth, and fresh fruits that represent African culture and idealism. Kwanzaa ceremonies often include music, readings, reflection, homages to ancestors, and libations.

Each day of the holiday promotes one of Kwanzaa’s seven principles:

  • Umoja (unity): Strive for and maintain unity in the family, community, nation, and race.

  • Kujichagulia (self-determination): Define and name ourselves — as well as create and speak for ourselves.

  • Ujima (collective work and responsibility): Build and maintain community together. Make our brothers' and sisters' problems our problems — and solve them together.

  • Ujamaa (cooperative economics): Build and maintain our own stores, shops, and other businesses — and profit from them together.

  • Nia (purpose): Make our collective vocation the building and developing of our community in order to restore our people to their traditional greatness.

  • Kuumba (creativity): Do as much as we can, in the way we can, in order to leave our community more beautiful and beneficial than we inherited it.

  • Imani (faith): Believe with all our hearts in our people, our parents, our teachers, our leaders, and the righteousness and victory of our struggle.

We, at TwinStar, want to wish all of our TwinStar Credit Union members and employees who celebrate Kwanzaa a happy and safe holiday season.