SAKA - "sack of cola nuts" symbol of affluence,
power, abundance, plenty, togetherness and unity
cola nut played an important role in the economic life of Ghana. A
widely-used cash crop, it is closely associated with affluence and
abundance. This symbol also represents the role of agriculture and trade
in bringing peoples together.
KWANZAA - December 26th - January 1st
Kwanzaa was founded in 1966 by Dr Maulana Karenga, a Black Studies professor. Kwanzaa originated as a cultural idea and an expression of the nationalist "US" organization which was headed by Dr
Kwanzaa is based on seven fundamental principles which are referred to as the Nguzo
Saba. Umoja - Unity, Kujichagulia - Self-Determination, Ujima - Collective Work and Responsibility, Ujamaa - Cooperative Economics, Nia - Purpose, Kuumba - Creativity and Imani - Faith
Each day of the holiday is devoted to the celebration of one of these principles. A table is prepared with the Kwanzaa symbols.
Mazao, fruits and vegetables represent the roots of the celebration as
a harvest ceremony. Mkeka, placemat, symbolizes the foundation of the holiday and the foundations of the
African- American people. Kinara, the cardleholder, symbolizes the African-American
ancestors. (3 green candles, 3 red and one black candle) Muhindi, ears of corn, represent the number of children in the household. They symbolize continuity and potential as corn grows from corn and each ear has the potential within it of becoming a stalk, and,
inturn, producing other ears. Kikombe Cha Umoja, communal cup of unity, symbolizes the unity of all people of African
desent. It is used to pour Tambiko, the libation, to the four cardinal points in the honor of the
ancestors and is passed among the celebrants of the holiday as a sign of
solidarity. Zawadi, gifts, may be given throughout the holiday or on a particular night to celebrate a special victory with that principle. The
gift(s) are given as rewards for promises kept, tasks accomplished, difficulties overcome, or progress made.