By Janéy Tate & James Mungin II
What it means
Ujima: the Nguzo Saba Kwanzaa Principle #3. Ujima (oo-JEE-mah) means the Collective Work & Responsibility. “To build and maintain our community together and to make our Brother’s and sister’s problems, our problems and to solve them together.”
Co-Op: a cooperative society, business, or enterprise.
How we began
The Ujima Co-Op literally just began today out of James and Janéy’s frustration with creating, building and networking with other young black professionals in South Florida. No lie, this group started from a post James created on Facebook about journalism students who should join forces to create a media company. Janéy, being in media herself, couldn’t help but to join in on the convo and voice her gripes of trying to start a media company.
From there the two created the closed, invite-only “Ujima Co-Op” Facebook group where young black professionals will have a chance to openly share what their professional and business goals are, ask for tips to succeed in that area, voice their concerns and hurdles they face chasing their goals and moderately promote their endeavors. And to keep the group from turning into an online flea market like most groups turn into — making you not want to even log into those shits after a while; we’ll monitor postings. We also created an “adopt a business or person” type of style where each week the group admins will choose a business or perosn to share their goals and plans and we as a group will chime in with advice, resources and just overall encouragement. We’ll choose people to highlight on a first come first serve basis. All you’ll have to do is direct message James or Janéy on Facebook with your information.
Also, we all can share local business, social, community affairs, events and political news that affect young black residents in South Florida. We’ll just have an approval process so porn doens’t get shared, like we were legit in an open group today and someone shared porn on the people’s page that served to promote kids football. We don’t have time for that, unless well your business is in the adult entertainment industry lol, and that’s a whole other conversation.
And most importantly this is our group! Feel free to leave suggestions, start healthy dialogue about social issues and just be dope ass fuck while doing it. We respect everyone’s beliefs and voice, and if you disrespect someone we’ll kick you out. Plain and simple. The main focus is to build each other up and to create a force of change for free. Although we’re all for joining chambers and associations, knowing which ones to join and what’s actually beneficial is a task within it self. It can also be costly. However, you can ask the group what’s the best to join, saving you time and money. And eventually, we’ll have meet ups for the group so we all can step from behind the phones and computers and see each other face to face.
But in the meantime, welcome to the Ujima Co-Op Kings and Queens. We’re here to help each other be great!