Reclaiming Our Way promoting the well-being of African American children & families


Kwanzaa 2015 / KUUMBA – Creativity

Kuumba - Kwanzaa - Day 6 Dec 31


Understanding and Nurturing Creativity and Self-Determination – A Monday Morning Meditation

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If only the world was as conversant in the historical context of Black self-determination as they appear to be in the extent and historical context of racial disparities. Unfortunately, this nation, and its host of media institutions, continues to perfect the art of telling stories of Black misery and hardship. It takes the form of new reports on old patterns of racial disparity.

We must be clear, however, that our community's challenges will not be resolved because we understand the extent of persistent racial disparities... as important as it is to always understand the nature and context of our current condition.

Our challenges will be resolved by our insistence that others take us seriously. More importantly, our challenges will be resolved as a result of our insistence on taking ourselves seriously.

This begins by investing just as much time in understanding how we survived the many centuries of white supremacy, racism and outside interference with our community's survival and institution-building, as we invest in understanding our current ranking on one scale or another that others use to measure community well-being. In this regard, Malcolm X's old admonition is worth the reminder... "Of all our studies, history is best qualified to reward our research."

After years of being involved in efforts to eliminate racial disparities in child welfare and related child and family serving systems, I'm convinced that equal or more of our time must be invested in understanding and nurturing the courageous and creative problem-solving capacity within our community. This includes understanding our capacity and efforts today and in years past.

There are plenty of very smart and skilled people within our community - perhaps more today than at any time in our recent history. We have within our community - at this very moment - all of the know how we need to bring about the kinds of conditions we want to see and experience for our children, our families and for the collective African / African American community. We have to be far more thoughtful and deliberate in understanding and pulling these skills, talents and resources together in support of our vision of a healthy and whole community.

I'm certain that some will feel threatened by this. But be reminded that this is only controversial to those who benefit from Black misery and death. All people deserve, and have an inherent responsibility, to promote the health and well-being of the community to which they belong.

On this day, and every day moving forward, I will recommit myself to doing more to promote the health and well-being of our community... to restore the way of health and well-being our ancestors have taught us. My only great desire is to be able to join you in doing the same.


Trust your struggle – Zain Asher

Interesting perspective about life and pursuing your goals and dreams, shared by CNN International reporter Zain Asher.

  • Trust your struggle - Your struggle will continue to lead you along your life path.
  • Don't compete for what you want; focus on 'creating' what it is that you want in your life - Your experience and success if ultimately about you and your path, not other strangers around you.
  • Give consistently and generously - The more you give, the more you will receive in return.
  • Be prepared and ready - Success comes when opportunity meets preparation. Your opportunity will come.

ZAIN ASHER was born and raised in London. She graduated from Oxford University where she studied French and Spanish (graduating with a distinction in oral Spanish). In 2006, she earned an MS from Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism, where she focused on business and financial news. Asher is a national business and personal finance correspondent for CNN, where she appears across platforms covering the latest news on money and the economy. She often reports from the New York Stock Exchange, covering equities and IPOs and interviewing entrepreneurs and dignitaries. In 2014, Asher was part of a team of reporters sent to Nigeria to cover the Boko Haram kidnappings of over 200 schoolgirls in Chibok, Nigeria. Asher comes to CNN from MONEY magazine where she covered careers and investing, primarily focusing on stocks, mutual funds, consumer tech stories and workplace advice. She served as a contributing reporter for, where she covered business trend and consumer stories. She has lived and worked in Mexico, France and Nigeria. Asher is fluent in French, Spanish and Igbo (her native Nigerian language).


Kwanzaa 2014 / KUUMBA – Creativity

Kuumba - Kwanzaa - Day 6 Dec 31


“Mourning at Night”: A Film by Students at Philly’s Strawberry Mansion High School

Here's another great example of how we can/should/do engage our children in both developing talents and skills, and telling our stories in ways that make a positive difference.  In fact, this models what we should all see as our responsibility... to use our own talents and skills in ways that make a difference for our children, our families and our community.

Read more about the work they're doing at Strawberry Mansion High School, at Technically Philly.

A short film created entirely by students from Strawberry Mansion High School in Philadelphia, PA. Collaboration between the US Attorney's Office for Eastern PA, WorkReady/EducationWorks, Strawberry Mansion High School and filmmakers/instructors El Sawyer and Jon Kaufman and support from: Derrick Toler, Aidan Un, Christian Hernandez, Catherine Christian.

Mourning at Night- A film made by students at Strawberry Mansion High School, Philadelphia, PA from Jon Kaufman on Vimeo.