CLLCTIVLY Uses Kwanzaa Principles to Build Community and Give Back

CLLCTIVLY has invested over $200,000 in Black-led and Black-owned businesses since its launch in 2019

On December 10, 1988, George Edward Tait published an article in the New Amsterdam News entitled, “Interlocking Principles: Kwanzaa and Buy Black Campaign,” a strategy to incorporate the principles of Kwanzaa into a yearlong campaign. Tait stated that these principles must become an “integral part of our daily existence and not just limited to a hasty observance during the final holiday season of the year.’  

It is with the words of Tait in mind that Jamye Wooten, founder of CLLCTIVLY, launched the Black Futures Micro-Grant, a monthly micro-grant program in Baltimore. “Community organizations often work in silos, these silos lead to fragmentation, fragmentation leads to duplication, and duplication leads to wasted resources – time, talent, and treasure,” said Wooten. “We believe that ideology is the glue that holds decentralized organizations together, the goal is unity, not uniformity – we center shared values, not personalities.”  

To put this idea into practice every month CLLCTIVLY host the Black Futures Micro-Grant where Black-led organizations serving in Baltimore submit a 2-3-minutes video highlighting their mission and incorporate at least one principle from the Nguzo Saba (seven principles of Kwanzaa) that aligns with their work. Once the video submission is close, the community-at-large votes for the monthly winner.  

Since the launch of the program in 2019 over 40,000 votes have been cast. Beyond raising dollars, the micro-grant is raising the visibility of Black-led organizations that often go unnoticed and underfunded. The Black Futures Micro-Grant opens for submissions every month on the 2nd –16thand voting runs from the 17th– 26th.  

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