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SOME FACTS AND HISTORY ABOUT KWANZAA

In 1968 Dr. Karenga wanted to create a way to provide cultural pride and unity for African Americans.  He derived a "holiday" based upon African rituals and customs.  Kwanzaa gets its roots from the ancient traditional celebrations associated with harvesting the first fruits in Africa.

The holiday is seven days long, and each day celebrates a different cultural aspect (or principle) to reflect and act upon.  This holiday is full of symbols, such as lighting a candle on the Kinara every day to symbolize a person's African roots.

The Seven Principles of Kwanzaa are: (1) Unity, (2) Self- Determination, (3) Collective Work Responsibility, (4) Cooperative Economics, (5) Purpose, (6) Creativity, and (7) Faith.

 

WEBSITES AND INFORMATION ABOUT KWANZAA

GIFT IDEAS FOR KWANZAA

Kwanzaa Facts and History

The Official Kwanzaa Website (official): Information, history and celebratory suggestions about the holiday.

Everything About Kwanzaa (TIKE): Good concise information about the holiday and its celebration.

Kwanzaa Information Center (MelaNet): Information, forum and activities surrounding the holiday.

Kwanzaa Recipes (Nancy): Recipes for the holiday.

Africa

Africa Online (official): Information, News and Facts about the countries on the African Continent.

Africam (official): Virtual game reserve.

African History (About.com): The history of Africa.

The Congo Cookbook African Recipies (official): Recipies for African cooking.
 

Gift giving has become a part of the tradition of this fairly new holiday.  Gifts are usually exchanged between the parents and children, however, friends and family may exchange as well. Gifts do not need to be large or expensive, however, one or more of the seven principles should be inherent within each gift. For instance, be creative with the gift by making something yourself, or work with others collectively to make or purchase a gift.  The opportunities are limitless.  The gifts could also be educational or bestow some faith in religion or cultural heritage.

If someone does not already follow the holiday, you might make it easier for them to take the first step if you purchase them their first Kinara or other symbols of the holiday.  This way you are both doing something nice, and expanding the celebration of this holiday one person or family.  Then one day they might pass on the traditions as well.

Some Kwanzaa gifts may include:

  • Kwanzaa items for those that do not have

  • African American or cultural Art or other items

  • Fruit & Vegetable baskets to celebrate the traditional harvest celebration

  • Books on Kwanzaa, Africa or African American Heritage

  • Airplane tickets to Africa or Cruise around Africa

SUGGESTED GIFTS FROM OUR AFFILIATES

CELEBRATION GOURMET GIFT BASKET

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The Complete Kwanzaa icon

MARQUIS(R) BY WATERFORD GIFT BOX TO CELEBRATE

Rose Sale Banner (125x125) - static

Bountiful Harvest

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Seven Candles for Kwanzaa icon

VEGETABLES MIXED GARDEN 2#

* More Gift Ideas *
     

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Last modified: March 20, 2012

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