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Starkville, MS (WCBI) — Since 1982 Brickfire Project of Starkville, a non profit organization has been observing Kwanzaa.

Kwanzaa is from the Swahili phrase ‘matunda ya kwanza,’ which means ‘first fruits of the harvest’. In 1966 African American professor and activist Maulana Karenga created the cultural festival. A candle is lit each day focusing on seven principals. Which are faith, purpose, collective work and responsibility, unity, self determination, collective economics, and creativity. The non religious festival is a time for families to gather for reflection.

“Sharing stories, sharing ideas, talking about the future. And getting children in the same mind set of, we have to build a community. We can start from our home, but we’ve got to build a community. And that is what Kwanzaa is all about,” said Helen Rose Taylor, Brickfire Project.

Kwanzaa runs through January First.

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