When Christmas comes to an end, Kwanzaa celebrations begin. Kwanzaa is an African-American and Pan-African holiday celebrating family, community and culture. It is held annually Dec. 26-Jan. 1, and was created in 1966 by Dr. Maulena Karenga, a California professor of African Studies, activist and author. 

“As an African-American and Pan-African holiday celebrated by millions throughout the world African community, Kwanzaa brings a cultural message which speaks to the best of what it means to be African and human in the fullest sense,” Karenga said. 

He stresses that Kwanzaa is a cultural holiday, and was not created to give people an alternative to their own religion or religious holiday. 

Each day of the seven days of Kwanzaa is dedicated to a principle. In Houston and the surrounding area, Kwanzaa activities are sponsored by various organizations. Here are the Seven Kwanzaa Principles (the Nguzo Saba) and this year’s Kwanzaa activities and locations: 

SUNDAY, DEC. 26 – Umoja (Unity) 

MONDAY, DEC. 27 – Kujichagulia (Self-determination) 

TUESDAY, DEC. 28 – Ujima (Collective work & responsibility) 

WEDNESDAY, DEC. 29 – Ujamaa (Cooperative economics)

THURSDAY, DEC. 30 – Nia (Purpose)

FRIDAY, DEC. 31 – Kuumba (Creativity)  

SATURDAY, JAN. 1 – Imani (Faith) 

For more information, visit https://www.shape.org/kwanzaa