About Us

the organizationHarambee Christian Family Center is dedicated to the development of indigenous leadership through a holistic ministry that seeks to address both physical and spiritual needs by emphasizing community engagement, academic advancement, and spiritual formation to cultivate a thriving urban neighborhood in a sustainable project of biblical hope.

In 1982, the neighborhood surrounding Harambee Center had the highest daytime crime rate in Southern California. The corner of Howard and Navarro, where we are located, was called “blood corner” because it saw the highest amount drive-by shootings and failed drug deals. Residents were held captive in their homes and there was little hope for change.

We believed the only legitimate way to become change-agents in this community was to become a part of it. Led by our founder, Dr. John Perkins, we moved into the community and became neighbors. For over 30 years we have served a 12-block target area, working with African American and Latino children and families.

“Harambee” means “Let’s get together and push” in Swahili. We seek to nurture and equip leadership that will holistically minister to the community by sharing Biblical truths, in order to achieve the re-building of urban neighborhoods through relocation, reconciliation and redistribution.

Our programs are emulated by peer organizations nationwide. Interns from around the world study our method of urban ministry. Awards received include Best Practices in Children’s Ministry (from Teaching Like Jesus Ministries) and the John Anson Ford Award (from L.A. County Human Relations Commission).

We are supported by the gifts of generous individuals, churches, local businesses, and private foundations.

Faith and Values

Disciplining young people is a core component of Harambee’s education. Students are encouraged to share and grow in their faith and love of Jesus Christ.

Prayer, worship, and commitment to faith are integral components of Harambee’s curriculum. Harambee engages students in character-based curriculum with the goal of training students to exude the character of Christ in action and beliefs.

Vision & Goals

  • Critical thinkers with strong academic aptitude
  • Creatively expressive
    Compassionate worshipers of Christ
  • Givers to Harambee as sta and supporters
  • Upstanding citizens who are actively involved in the community
  • Morally courageous. Unashamed or afraid to stand up
    for what they believe.
  • Emotionally and Psychologically healthy

Parent Support

  • Parents are actively involved in the education of their children.
  • Parents regularly volunteer and participate in school functions and activities.
    •  Harambee hosts monthly Parent
      Support classes.
    • Parents are given lessons on healthy practices
      that benefit themselves and their families.
    • Seasonal ESL classes for Spanish speaking
      parents.