When the “battered women’s movement” was still young in the late 1970’s, a small group of Latina activists gathered in St. Paul, MN, to educate their communities and advocate for Latinas. Casa de Esperanza incorporated as a nonprofit organization in 1982 and opened a shelter.
The name Ujima was derived from the third principle of Kwanzaa, and means Collective Work and Responsibility. As an organization, they understand the need to mobilize and heal their communities from the inside out. They utilize this principle to empower service providers, policy makers, advocates and the community-at-large to address the unique challenges faced by the Black Community as it relates to violence across a broad spectrum.