Why You Should Celebrate Kwanzaa

Every year families nationwide gather from December 26 to January 1 to celebrate Kwanzaa. Kwanzaa celebrates the African-American community, culture, and family. In 1966, Dr. Maulana Karenga started Kwanzaa to give African Americans an alternative to Christmas while giving Black people a chance to celebrate themselves and their history. 

The name Kwanzaa comes from a Swahili phrase “matunda ya kwanza” which means “first fruits of harvest”. Many families celebrate Kwanzaa differently, but the common tradition is that each day of Kwanzaa highlights a different principal.

Umoja: Unity

Unity throughout the community, family, race, and nation is essential. Healthy Roots Dolls strive to create a community of all of Zoe’s curlfriends nationwide, spreading curl power and love from young to old. 

Kujichagulia: Self-determination

Self-determination is the way to define one’s self and create one’s self. Children’s self-esteem is impacted by the toys they play with. Self-development aids self-determination in the future which is why representation in toys for black girls playing with black dolls is so important.

Ujima: Collective Work and Responsibility

Collective work and responsibility highlights the importance of problem-solving and working together as a whole. This year has been hard for many small and black-owned businesses. Working through  COVID-19, we partnered with Jingle Jangle Jangles and Things Shop and Kinfield: Better Together to work with other small owned businesses to survive this unprecedented year.

Ujamaa: Cooperative Economics

Cooperative Economics is building and maintaining our own shops and helping them strive together. Healthy Roots Dolls supports entrepreneurship and black ownership. Our Founder and CEO, Yelitsa Jean-Charles, started her journey in 2015 while studying illustration at the Rhode Island School of Design. Click here to learn more about some of the wonderful young black entrepreneurs we support.

Nia: Purpose 

Nia focuses on having intention behind building and restoring our community’s legacy and greatness. As a multicultural toy company, we strive to unify and make an impact on younger generations. Teaching them to love every aspect of themselves.

Kuumba: Creativity

Kuumba is all about creativity and doing what we can to beautify the community. Our first black doll, Zoe has hair that can be washed and styled just like real hair. We want little girls to learn how to love their natural hair, do their hair, and to spark creativity within them through hair play that will affect other areas of their life. 

Imani: Faith

Imani is about having faith in yourself, your community, leaders, and that it will be a victory after the struggle. This year imani has shown us how important it is to keep the faith and hope for the future. As a multicultural toy company, we want to instill the same faith and hope into the children for their futures, showing them that they can be anything they want to be.

We believe representation matters. Representation aids self-love and celebration of your heritage and community. Black children feel seen when they grow up with inspiring people and toys that look like them and teach them.

Kwanzaa was created for us all to feel seen and heard. From our team to your family, we want to wish everybody a Happy Kwanzaa!