WHEN: September 6 & 7.
WHERE: Willow Ridge Community Association 618 Acadia Dr. SE, Calgary
Friday Evening Program:
4:00 – 5:00 PM – Visit Quilt at Fish Creek Library, 11161 Bonaventure Dr.SE
5:00 – 6:00 PM – Registration and Happy Hour at Willow Ridge Community Association.
6:00 PM – Welcome
6:15 PM – Buffet supper provided by Ujamaa Grandmas
7:45 PM – Climate Change Fashion Show with discussion to follow
 9:00 PM – Evening concludes and Marketplace sets up
 Saturday Program: 
8:15 AM – Light breakfast. Marketplace will be open between sessions.
9:00 – 10:30 AM – Stephen Lewis Foundation staff presentation
10:30 – 10:45 AM – Break
10:45 AM – Presentation on Widow Pillaging by Dr Annalee Coakley
11:45 AM – Lunch and Marketplace shopping
1:00 PM – Update on HIV/ AIDS by Dr Eliana Castillo
2:00 PM – Break
2:15 PM – Stephen Lewis Foundation, videos, discussion on group concerns and group sharing
4:00 PM- Closing address and goodbyes
  •  Limited billets are available; please email Attn: Marilyn Simmons after you have registered. They will be available on a first come first served basis.
  • The Anniversary Quilt will be on display at Fish Creek Library throughout September, and we encourage you to visit the quilt from 4:00 – 5:00 PM on Friday.
  • Event tickets are $40.00 and include buffet supper on Friday, light breakfast, snacks and lunch on Saturday. Tickets are available on Eventbrite from June 17 to August 17 and are limited to 90. Event link:
  • All attendees are asked to bring a mug, water bottle and name tag.

Tea in the Garden

You are Invited to Tea in the Garden, Sunday July 28,2pm-5pm  at the home of Jean Whittaker, 331156 RR32 north of the Westcott cemetery. See map in the Calendar.

In aid of Grandmothers Mountainview.

Entry by Donation. All proceeds go to the Stephen Lewis Foundation to assist grandmothers in sub-Saharan Africa.

Email if you need a ride. A  few spots are available.

Tea, Scones and Malaria

BOOK CLUB July  2024 Selection

This month our  book is Tea, Scones and Malaria by Katlynn Brooks.

This book is a phenomenal true account of one girl’s extraordinary upbringing in the rough and feral bushveld of 1950s and 60s Rhodesia. Moving from one makeshift camp to the next, the family follows Dad, a bridge builder for the government, deep into the heart of elephant and cheetah country.

“We ran barefoot in the bush, and swam in crocodile-infested rivers. We shared our camps with snakes, scorpions, and jerrymunglums. There was no electricity, no hospitals, and no schools in the bush. How I survived it all, I will never know.”

Hilarious, touching, raw, and deeply honest, this memoir records the journey from child to teenager to woman against the backdrop of a vanishing world, as Rhodesia begins its long and tumultuous transition into the independent country of Zimbabwe.

S.AB Liaison to Stephen Lewis Foundation – July 2024 Report

I have been asked by the SLF to ensure all members learn how they can access the Granny Bulletin. As a reminder, the Granny Bulletin can be accessed online through the Grandmothers Campaign website under “News”. I have added the link to the June issue of the Granny Bulletin here for easy access: I would suggest that campaign members bookmark this link in their browser so that they can easily access it if they need any information related to the Speaker’s Bureau, the National Grandparents’ Day Toolkit, and the trip application.

Please fill out the National Grandparents’ Day registration form! if Ujamaa is involved in the initiative. The SLF want to make sure we keep track of all initiatives across the campaign.

Don’t forget to register for the September gathering.
Judy Howe

Support Our UJAMAA GRANDMAS Stride Team

Our Ujamaa Grandmas (UG) team of 9 members plus 1 terrific husband (mine) are participating in Stride to Turn the Tide 2024, to raise funds in solidarity with grandmothers who walk with purpose every day, and their Community Based Organizations, in sub-Saharan Africa. Team members will keep track of the times spent on a wide variety of activities – creatively as well as physically. One hour of activity = 5 km. Our goals are to ‘virtually walk’ 2,000 km and to raise $6,000.

The Stephen Lewis Foundation’s community-led partner organizations in sub-Saharan Africa expertly provide grandmothers with holistic care – including support groups, grief counselling, access to healthcare, income generating projects, counselling for the children in their care, help to send their grandchildren to school, and so much more.

The tremendous generosity of our friends, family, and community has been inspiring in the past ($7,722 in total!). Let’s continue this impact, together. With your donation, the African grandmothers and their organizations can continue the urgent work they are doing to support their families and communities to safeguard decades of progress made against the HIV epidemic. You can make a donation to the Ujamaa Grandmas team by using the following link: Stride to Turn the Tide 2024 and choosing the DONATE button.

Of course, new members are very welcome. Use the above link and then ‘Register’ to join our team – you’ll have a sense of contributing (as with so many other UG activities for our African grandmothers that we do). If you have any questions, please email me at

Thank you for your solidarity and support!
Jan Geggie
Team Lead

Stride to Turn the Tide Stephen Lewis Foundation (SLF) 2024

During June, Grandmothers’ groups across Canada are once again participating in the Stride to fundraise for our sister Grandmothers in Africa, who are supported by the SLF Community Based Organizations. We all have daily activities and hobbies that can be used in the Ujamaa Grandmas Stride this year by

  • being creative – knitting, sewing, crafting, quilting
  • being active – walk, swim, bike, hike, run
  • being busy in our home preparing meals or with housework

If you do any of the above, or others, we’d love to have you join us: click on this link: Stride to Turn the Tide 2024. Virtual movements are calculated so that 1hr activity = 5 km.

Members of our team are encouraged to ask for sponsorships or make a donation to the Ujamaa Grandmas team by clicking on the following: Stride to Turn the Tide 2024 and choosing the DONATE button. Many of us are shy to ask others to sponsor us. We all know that there are great needs for our Grandmothers in Africa. There is a ‘sponsor me’ email on the Stride site – adapt it to your comfort level to ask for sponsorship. Or, if you prefer, just make a donation to the Ujamaas’ team.

Our goals are to raise $6,000 and to virtually ‘walk’ 2,000 km — last year we raised $7,722.25, by asking our families and friends to sponsor us. The grand total we’ve raised since we started in 2020 was $45,007!!! That has gone a long way to help the Community Based Organizations in Africa who support their grandmothers.

Please register before May 24th. We will begin on June 1st until the 30th.

Jan Geggie, Team Captain

UJAMAA GRANDMAS Crochet and Knit group

We now have a Ujamaa Grandmas Crochet and Knit group. The purpose of the group is to build relationships as we create products for BAGS, BABIES & BEYOND in the community.

The group provides opportunities to improve skills, share ideas, build excitement and be inspired by the work of our fellow makers. Currently the group meets on the first Tuesday of the month 1:00-3:00 pm.

Currently, most of our members are in south Calgary. As the group grows, members will decide what works best for the group in terms of timing, location and activity. The Accessories and Yarn Custodians are members of the group.  We miss our makers from the north so if you live in the north and wish to participate, there is potential for a north meeting location. If you have been a maker, or if you would like to become a maker for UJAMAA GRANDMAS and you are interested in joining us or have questions, feel free to contact us by email at handcrafts@ujamaagrandmas.comattention Mary-Anna Louise Kovar

 This Child Will Be Great

BOOK CLUB April  2024 Selection

This month our  book is This Child Will Be Great, a memoir by Ellen Johnson Sirleaf. Sirleaf shares the story of her rise to power, including her early childhood; her experiences with abuse, imprisonment, and exile; and her fight for democracy and social justice. She reveals her determination to succeed in multiple worlds, from her studies in the United States to her work as an international bank executive, to campaigning in some of Liberia’s most desperate and war-torn villages and neighborhoods. It is the tale of an outspoken political and social reformer who fought the oppression of dictators and championed change. By telling her story, Sirleaf encourages women everywhere to pursue leadership roles at the highest levels of power, and gives us all hope that we can change the world.

Sirleaf became the first elected head of state of an African country (in this case, Liberia, in 2006) She  won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2011.

Burger’s Daughter

BOOK CLUB March  2024 Selection

Burger’s Daughter by Nadine Gordimer (winner  of the Nobel Prize for Literature) was published in 1979. This novel is modelled after real people involved in the struggle against apartheid in South Africa.

This is the moving story of the unforgettable Rosa Burger, a young woman from South Africa cast in the mold of a revolutionary tradition. Rosa tries to uphold her heritage handed on by martyred parents while still carving out a sense of self. Although it is wholly of today, Burger’s Daughter can be compared to those 19th century Russian classics that make a certain time and place come alive, and yet stand as universal celebrations of the human spirit.

Most of our books to date have been written by contemporary young, black African authors and we thought it would be interesting to go back to this earlier period in history.

What Is Not Yours Is Not Yours

BOOK CLUB January  2024 Selection

 What Is Not Yours Is Not Yours by Helen Oyeyemi is a collection of short stories and is cleverly built around the idea of keys, literal and metaphorical. The key to a house, the key to a heart, the key to a secret—Oyeyemi’s keys not only unlock elements of her characters’ lives, they promise further labyrinths on the other side.
Oyeyemi’s tales span multiple times and landscapes as they tease boundaries between coexisting realities. Is a key a gate, a gift, or an invitation?

Things Fall Apart

BOOK CLUB September 2023 Selection

Things Fall Apart by Nigerian author Chinua Achebe, was written in 1958 and is considered a classic in African literature and has inspired many African authors of today.
THINGS FALL APART tells two overlapping, intertwining stories, both of which center around Okonkwo, a “strong man” of an Ibo village in Nigeria.
The first  storiy traces Okonkwo’s fall from grace with the tribal world in which he lives, and in its classical purity of line and economical beauty it provides us with a powerful fable about the immemorial conflict between the individual and society.
The second story is as modern as the first is ancient, and elevates the book to a tragic plane,
 These twin dramas are perfectly harmonized, and they are modulated by an awareness capable of encompassing at once the life of nature, human history, and the mysterious compulsions of the soul.

Toufah: The Woman who Inspired an African #MeToo Movement

BOOK CLUB July 2023 Selection
An incandescent and inspiring memoir from a courageous young woman who, after she was forced to flee to Canada from her home in The Gambia, became the first woman to publicly call the country’s dictator to account for sexual assault—launching an unprecedented protest movement in West Africa.
Join us to share this powerful story. Toufah: The Woman who Inspired an African #MeToo Movement by Toufah Jallow with Kim Pittaway.

I Am a Girl From Africa

BOOK CLUB June 2023 Selection

Eizabeth Nyamayaro is from Zimbabwe. At the age of 8, she nearly died of starvation during a famine. Her rescue by a United Nations aid worker inspired her with a dream to work for the UN. This memoir recounts her early life in a small village and her career working for a variety of causes at the UN, including HIV/AIDS, child marriage, domestic violence, and women’t rights. It is an inspirational read.


BOOK CLUB May 2023 Selection

Glory is a new book from NoViolet Bulawayo, the award-winning author of the Booker-prize finalist We Need New Names.
NoViolet Bulawayo’s bold new novel follows the fall of the Old Horse, the long-serving leader of a fictional country, and the drama that follows for a rumbustious nation of animals on the path to true liberation.

Powered By Love

BOOK CLUB April 2023 Selection

Powered by Love is  the book written for the Stephen Lewis Foundation by Joanna Henry and Ilana Landsberg-Lewis. Many of us have this book but we thought it would be interesting to read it from cover to cover (instead of using it as a reference) and talk about it together.

How Beautiful We Were by Imbolo Mbue

BOOK CLUB February 2023 Selection

On February 24, we will be discussing the novel “How Beautiful We Were” by Cameroonian-American author Imbolo Mbue.

This book is about a fictional African village that is suffering from pollution and environmental degradation caused by an American oil company, and how they decided to fight back. We have also read Mbue’s previous novel, Behold the Dreamers, and loved it.

Unbowed by Wangari Maathai

BOOK CLUB January 2023 Selection

This month we will be  discussing Unbowed,  a memoir by Wangari Maathai, founder of the Green Belt Movement and winner of the Nobel Peace Prize for her environmental and social justice work.

We are looking forward to what promises to be an inspirational life story.

This is a remarkable memoir of courage, faith, and the power of persistence; about one woman’s extraodinary journey from her childhood in rural Kenya to the world stage. “[Maathai’s] story provides uplifting proof of the power of perseverance–and of the power of principled, passionate people to change their countries and inspire the world.”

Behold the Dreamers 

BOOK CLUB November 2022 Selection

 Behold the Dreamers by Imbolo Mbue tells the  tale of a young couple from Cameroon who come to the US in search of a better life.Their precarious legal status makes their lives very difficult. Interestingly, the author portrays the struggles of their wealthy employer at the time of the 2008 stock market crash as well, and  in an empathetic manner. It’s a novel that’s hard to put down, so you would still have time to read it by November 11 if you’d like to join us! New members are always welcome. Just write to message@ujamaagrandmas.doc and we’ll send you the Zoom link.

Wife of the Gods by Kwei Quartey

BOOK CLUB September 2022 Selection

Kwei Quartey is a Ghanaian author of detective fiction who has written a couple of series featuring two different detectives. We thought this might be a nice change from the ‘heavier’ books we have been reading, good and important as they are.










The first book will likely be a quick read and so we will also read Alexandra Fuller’s “Cocktail Hour Under the Tree of Forgetfulness”, a beautifully written memoir by a white author who grew up in Africa.

New members are always welcome. If you are interested, write to – attention Book Club