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December 2016

The First Principle of Kwanzaa: Umoja which means Unity


Greeting: Habari gani! (What’s the news?) 
Response: Umoja! (Unity)

Today is the first day of Kwanzaa and the principle is Unity. To strive for and maintain unity in the family, community, nation and race. Unity stresses the importance of togetherness for the family and the community. Unity is needed to build the foundation of a self-sustaining, productive community. All productive people groups have practiced that. Light the black candle in the center.

Please spread the word:
Friday, 12/30/2016, 4:30PM
African Heritage Cultural Arts Center 
6161 NW 22nd Avenue 
Miami, FL 33142

Donations of books and new, unwrapped educational toys are greatly appreciated. 

RSVP online at

For more information call the Dr. Arthur & Mary Woodard Foundation for Education and Culture at (305) 343-9088. Harambee!!!

#wakeUP #STAYwoke #Kwanzaa #NguzoSaba #umoja #kujichagulia #ujima#ujamaa #nia #kuumba #imani #unity #selfdetermination#collectiveworkandresponsibility #cooperativeeconomics #purpose#creativity #faith #FAMU #MiamiDadeChapter #FAMUAlumni#OsunsVillageMiami #AMWFEC #commUNITY #KwanzaaMiami2016


It's Kwanzaa Time! Let's Celebrate in Miami! [VIDEO]


Today is the first day of the week-long celebration of Kwanzaa. This is the fiftieth year that Kwanzaa has been celebrated. Now, more than ever, we need to live the Seven Principles of Kwanzaa all year long. Kwanzaa is not an anti-Christmas observance as some would have you to believe. Kwanzaa is not anti-religious either. Kwanzaa is a non-religious, non-political celebration intended to unite, educate, uplift, and strengthen the Black community. No one is going to save us but us. 

Please spread the word:
Friday, 12/30/2016, 4:30PM
African Heritage Cultural Arts Center 
6161 NW 22nd Avenue 
Miami, FL 33142

Donations of books and new, unwrapped educational toys are greatly appreciated. 

RSVP online at

For more information call the Dr. Arthur & Mary Woodard Foundation for Education and Culture at (305) 343-9088. Harambee!!!


#wakeUP #STAYwoke #Kwanzaa #NguzoSaba #umoja #kujichagulia #ujima#ujamaa #nia #kuumba #imani #unity #selfdetermination#collectiveworkandresponsibility #cooperativeeconomics #purpose#creativity #faith #FAMU #MiamiDadeChapter #FAMUAlumni#OsunsVillageMiami #AMWFEC #commUNITY #KwanzaaMiami2016


Free Tax Preparation at Miami Dade College

Miami Dade College Once Again Offers Free Tax Preparation at Six Campuses Miami, Dec. 14, 2016 – Miami Dade College (MDC) will once again provide free tax preparation services to low-income individuals, the elderly and non-English speaking residents throughout Miami-Dade County as part of the Internal Revenue’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program (VITA). Administered and staffed by MDC School of Business faculty and students, services will begin Monday, Feb. 6, at various MDC campuses through April. Federal income tax returns must be in the mail and postmarked no later April 18, 2017. MDC launched the MDC/IRS VITA program 23 years ago and collaborates with Single Stop, a student services support program that connects MDC students and their families to the resources they need to attain a higher education. Last year, the MDC/IRS VITA program completed 2,606 individual tax returns college-wide, amounting to more than $2,925,570 in refunds. More than $1,034,287 in Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) was refunded to qualifying individuals.“MDC business students are trained beforehand and must pass an IRS exam of basic rules, regulations, and tax preparation skills before they assist taxpayers. Divided into three groups, their functions are administrative, tax return preparation, and quality review,” said Dr. Ana M. Cruz, college wide director of the program.Requirements to have taxes prepared through the VITA program include social security card and social security cards of any dependents to be claimed; Photo ID; W-2 earnings statement; 1099 MISC (for self-employed only); 1099 INT (interest income); and any documents pertaining to expenses to be claimed. MDC VITA locations and hours:MDC Hialeah Campus (Feb. 7 to April 11, 2017)1776 W. 49 St., Hialeah 33012Room 2413 (Building 1800)Walk-ins: Tuesdays, 4 - 7 p.m. Tel. 305-237-1199Additional information: A maximum of 25 clients per Tuesday. Customers must be signed in prior to 6 p.m. Languages spoken: English and Spanish. MDC Homestead Campus (Feb. 11 to April 8, 2017)500 College Terrace, Homestead 33030Room D-307Walk-ins: Saturdays, 9 a.m. – 12 p.m.Tel. 305-237-5109Additional information: Languages spoken: English and Spanish. MDC InterAmerican Campus (Feb. 8 to April 12, 2017)627 S.W. 27 Ave., Miami 33135Walk-ins: Wednesdays, 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Tel. 305-237-6484Additional information: Customers will only be accepted until 3 p.m. Languages spoken: English and Spanish. MDC Kendall Campus (Feb. 7 to April 13, 2017)11011 S.W. 104 St., Miami 33176Location A: Building 6, Room 6343 Appointment only: Tuesdays, 2 – 4 p.m.; Thursdays, 12:30 – 4 p.m. | Saturdays, 9 – 11 a.m.Tel. 305-237-2283 or 305-237-2375Additional information: Collaboration between MDC School of Business and Single Stop. Taxpayers must arrive at the site one hour before closing. Languages spoken: English and Spanish. MDC Kendall Campus (Feb. 6 to April 14, 2017)11011 S.W. 104 St., Miami 33176Location B: Courtyard/Library, Building 2, Room 2118Walk-ins: Monday – Thursday, 9:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.; Fridays, 9:30 a.m. – 2 p.m.Tel. 305-237-2502Additional information: Collaboration between MDC School of Business and Single Stop. Taxpayers must arrive at the site one hour before closing. Languages spoken: English and Spanish. MDC North Campus (Feb. 7 to April 13, 2017)11380 N.W. 27 Ave., Miami 33167Building 3, Room 3101 (first floor)Walk-ins: Monday through Thursday; 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Fridays, 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. Tel. 305-237-1199Additional information: Collaboration between MDC School of Business and Single Stop. Customers must be signed in by 5 p.m.Languages spoken: English, Spanish and Creole. MDC Wolfson Campus (Feb. 11 to April 8, 2017)300 N.E. 2nd Ave., downtown Miami 33132Room 2318 (Building 2, third floor)Walk-ins Monday – Thursday: Feb. 7 to April 13, 11 a.m. – 6 p.m.; Saturdays, Feb. 11 – April 8, 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. Tel. 305-237-3151Additional information: Collaboration between MDC School of Business and Single Stop. This site will accept customers until 11 a.m. Saturdays and will serve a maximum of 30 customers per Saturday. Languages spoken: English and Spanish. For more information about VITA, please visit .

HAIL TO THE CHIEF: EBONY to Release President Obama Commemorative Issue


Special collector’s edition salutes eight years of excellence 

CHICAGO — To mark the political ascent and enduring legacy of President Barack H. Obama, EBONY has published a special commemorative edition, “Hail to the Chief: Saluting Eight Years of Excellence.” This stylish, thought-provoking issue (83 pages; $10.99) is a unique collection of exclusive photographs, archival EBONY articles and hard-hitting analyses from leading African-American writers including award-winning poet, author and civil rights activist, Nikki Giovanni; MSNBC award-winning journalist Joy-Ann Reid; culturally astute critic Eric Deggans; pop culture pundit Touré; and New York Times best-selling author Baratunde Thurston.

“Our readers know the utter importance of simple images of Obama and the first family in a White House that had been very literal with respect to its previous inhabitants,” says Kyra Kyles, editor-in-chief of EBONY.  “But our team went well beyond the aesthetics and recruited the most sought-after Black thought leaders to candidly discuss the social context around his administration, his achievements over two terms and the impact he will have as our first but hopefully not our last.”

Among the highlights:

  • Editor’s Letter: EIC Kyles bids adieu to President Barack Obama in this touching reflection on his absolute grace under partisan fire.

  • Poetic Justice: Nikki Giovanni pens an exclusive poem for EBONY capturing the essence of the first African-American president.

  • The Legacy: From his electrifying ascent to the legislative imprint he leaves behind, EBONY examines President Obama’s undeniable impact on health care, race relations, gay and women’s rights.

  • The Love: We examine the love shared by President Barack and First Lady Michelle Obama and its impact on uplifting Black families.

  • The Look: By combining haute couture with dashes of attainable attire, the first family embraced the power of fashion.

  • The Laughs: He could have occasionally been dubbed “comic-in-chief.”  A look at Obama’s best clapbacks.

  • Famous Farewells: Supporters ranging from members of Congress to well-known entertainers offer their thanks and words of encouragement to the 44th U.S. president.  

EBONY’s commemorative special commemorative edition will be available December 20 for purchase on newsstands only


Kwanzaa Celebration in Miami Friday, 12/30


"Kwanzaa, the Nguzo Saba and Our Constant Striving: Repairing, Renewing and Remaking Our World" 

Join us for the 27th ANNUAL MARY WILLIAMS WOODARD LEGACY KWANZAA CELEBRATION in Miami, Florida. This joyous celebration of family, friends and community is the largest and longest-running local public celebration of the Nguzo Saba (Principles of Kwanzaa). 

This year, we are excited that Dr. Tameka Bradley Hobbs will join us as our keynote speaker. Hobbs is a historian, professor, author, professor, and social commentator. We will also be treated to the talents of musician, dancer and artist, Prince Emmanuel Abiodun Aderele and the OsunDara Dance Theater, Grammy-nominated spoken word artist Rebecca “Butterfly” Vaughns and the award-winning Next Generation Dance Academy. 

Culture influencer, philanthropist, speaker and mogul-in-the-making, Zoe Terry returns with her Zoe’s Great Doll Give-Away. Zoe’s Dolls collects and distributes little brown dolls for little brown girls. 

In addition to the Kwanzaa Celebration traditions of uplift and unity, there will be a special community prayer for healing in our prayer and for the victims of senseless gun violence that have taken so many lives.

Our unsung hero community salute goes to William “DC” Clark and his recently activated DCS Mentoring Program for young males. Clark, along with other like-minded, committed men, and a few women, teach young men self-respect, discipline, responsibility, etiquette and other valuable life skills.  

Hosted by the Miami-Dade Chapter of the FAMU National Alumni Association, the Dr. Arthur & Mary Woodard Foundation for Education and Culture and Osun's Village African Caribbean Arts Corridor. 

The event is FREE but please register at Kwanzaa is a non-religious, non-political, family-friendly holiday. Enjoy the Soul Food Feast, music, dancing and celebrating with friends.

Donations of books and new, unwrapped educational toys are greatly appreciated.

If you have any questions, email Vanessa Byers at or call (305) 343-9088.  HARAMBEE!

#KwanzaaMiami2016 #NguzoSaba #TheSevenPrinciples


Unleashing the Power of Women in Miami; Commissioner Daniella Levine Cava Releases First Miami-Dade County Status of Women and Girls Report


Cava. Report on Wmen.
Commissioner Daniella Levine Cava announces the release of the first report on the status of women and girls in Miami-Dade.


On Tuesday, December 6, Commissioner Daniella Levine Cava, members of women’s organizations, the Miami-Dade Commission for Women, The Miami-Dade Commission Auditor and FIU’s Metropolitan Center, gathered to commemorate the release of the report on the status of women and girls in Miami-Dade County.

The report, authored by Dr. Maria Ilcheva of the Metropolitan Center, is the first annual report prepared for the Miami-Dade County Commission to evaluate the opportunities for women in the areas of economic opportunity, health and safety and education. Commissioner Levine Cava sponsored an ordinance in September 2015 adopting the UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW). This ordinance, unanimously adopted by the County Commission, requires annual reports to be written, which will create benchmarks that can be used to measure progress on women’s issues.

Some key findings from the report are:

·         Women in Miami-Dade County make 87 cents to every dollar a man earns.

·         Hispanic and Black women earned 63 cents to the dollar of white women.

·         Most businesses in the County are still owned by men, including employer businesses. However, women-owned businesses grew more than men-owned businesses between 2007 and 2012. 

·         The value of contracts the County awards to women-owned businesses represents only 3.7% of the total value of contracts awarded.

·         Only 32% of members of County boards are women.

·         Rape cases in areas under Miami-Dade County Police jurisdiction were up 14.4% in the first 8 months of the year.

Below are highlights from the event: 

“These numbers tell a story of a community that has much left to do. We want to fully unleash the economic potential of women in Miami-Dade,” said Commissioner Levine Cava. “I am energized to start working on improving opportunities for women and to champion initiatives that will help women and families rise above these barriers and fully thrive.”

“The gaps are consistent,” said Dr. Ilcheva. “Women earn less than men across occupations.”

The Miami-Dade Commission for Women prepared policy recommendations based on the report. “These recommendations include new ideas, as well as follow up on existing policies and funding for existing programs,” said Marie Woodson, Chair of the Miami-Dade Commission for Women.


Miami-Dade county Report on the Status of Women
Dr. Maria Ilcheva of the FIU Metropolitan Center presents the report’s findings.


Marie Woodson. Release of Report of the Status of Women in Miami-Dade County.
Marie Woodson, Chair of the Miami-Dade Commission For Women, explains the recommendations based on the report.




Comcast Cable Accepting Proposals for Two New African American Owned Independent Networks 


(Black PR Wire) PHILADELPHIA--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Comcast Cable announced the company is now accepting proposals for two substantially African American owned, independent networks that it will launch in select Comcast markets by January 2019.

The announcement is part of the company’s commitment to launch independently owned and operated networks as part of a series of public interest commitments made by Comcast in connection with the NBCUniversal transaction completed in 2011. Since the NBCUniversal transaction, Comcast has successfully launched over 20 independent networks, doubling the number of independent networks launches that it committed to as part of the transaction. Four of those networks were launched as a result of a public request for channels that satisfied the criteria established in several agreements between Comcast and leading diversity organizations: two African American majority owned networks (ASPiRE and REVOLT) and two Hispanic American operated networks (Baby First Americas and El Rey). Additionally, two substantially Hispanic American owned networks, Kids Central and Primo TV, will launch on Comcast Cable systems beginning in January 2017.

“We are looking forward to receiving another round of great proposals as we begin the process to launch two more African American majority owned networks,” said Justin Smith, Senior Vice President of Content Acquisition for Comcast Cable.

Criteria for selecting the next two substantially African American owned networks that Comcast will launch include: the content of the network; whether the network is fully financed; whether the network’s ownership and/or management group(s) are well established, have relevant experience, and are substantially owned by African Americans; whether the network is already launched and has existing or potential multichannel video programming distributor (MVPD) distribution; price; and whether the network and its potential carriage provide value to Comcast and its customers. Comcast will accept proposals for every major genre, including general entertainment, movies, music, kids, news, and sports.

Applicants may visit to submit a proposal and learn about the terms and conditions. Proposals are due by March 15, 2017, and the two networks will be selected in the coming months.


Congresswoman Frederica Wilson Awarded Honorary Doctorate Degree by Bethune-Cookman University

Rep. Wilson hooded at BCU Graduation

DAYTONA BEACH, FL – Congresswoman S. Wilson (FL-24), was awarded an honorary doctorate degree from Bethune-Cookman University (BCU) for her contributions to society and commitment to service at the BCU fall commencement ceremony on Saturday, December 10, 2016, in the Mary McLeod Bethune Performing Arts Center in Daytona Beach.  The degree was presented by BCU President Dr. Edison O. Jackson, and Board of Trustees Chairperson Dr. Joe Petrock.

Wilson has a Bachelor of Science degree in Elementary Education from Fisk University, a Master of Science degree in Elementary Education from the University of Miami, and an Honorary Doctorate degree from Florida Memorial University.



IFE-ILE Afro-Cuban Dance Company to Expand Annual Festival with Prestigious 2016 Knight Arts Challenge Grant 

IFE-ILE Afro-Cuban Dance Company
IFE-ILE Afro-Cuban Dance Company

IFE-ILE Afro-Cuban Dance Company, Miami’s premier Afro-Cuban cultural organization, has been awarded a prestigious 2016 Knight Arts Challenge grant in the amount of $20,000 to expand its one-of-a-kind annual Afro-Cuban dance festival.  IFE-ILE is a two-time winner of the Knight Arts Challenge.
Knight Foundation’s Knight Arts Challenge funds ideas that bring South Florida together through the arts. IFE-ILE is among 44 local projects that will share $2.78 million from the Knight Arts Challenge. The winning ideas are authentically Miami, using the arts to provide a voice to a range of people and communities and reflect the essence of the city.
“This project aims to convert IFE-ILE Afro-Cuban Dance Festival, already an important intermediary of Afro-Cuban culture in Miami, into a repository of Cuban culture and an important link between both shores.”
IFE-ILE recently celebrated its 16th Annual IFE-ILE Afro-Cuban Dance Festival. Torres, an award-winning choreographer and instructor, plans to use the grant funds to expand the festival, which already produces a wide array of workshops for all ages reflecting the diversity of the African diaspora, live performances and academic discussions on relevant cultural topics. 
Torres is currently researching cultural re-encounters and retention patterns maintained by the Cuban emigrants. From this research, a performance narrative will explore the effect of the cultural division between those who leave their country and those who remain behind reflecting the identity crisis that many citizens from other countries in turmoil are facing today. IFE-ILE plans to invite five professional dancers and instructors from Cuba to collaborate on this project through a cultural exchange in the summer of 2017. The project will include seminars open to the public, workshops, a short-term camp for children with a closing performance.