12 African Americans explore Ghana… On ‘Beyond the Return’ mission

A global non-profit organisation, Birthright Africa, in collaboration with the Black Highway led by American musician, Jidenna Mobisson, has led 12 young African Americans to Ghana to explore their African heritage for the first time.
The 13-day visit, being organised with the support of the Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA), seeks to transform young African diasporans in creating life-changing opportunities for people of African descent to connect with their cultural roots and legacy of innovation.

Birthright Africa is an organisation that collaborates with various partners to provide free educational trips to Africa for young black people of ages 13 to 30.
The young men arrived in the country on August 4, 2022, in line with the “Beyond the Return” initiative of the government to commemorate the 400th anniversary of the arrival of the first recorded enslaved Africans in Jamestown Virginia in 1619.


Black Highway

The visit, dubbed: “The Black Highway Birthright Programme”, is a 13-day journey where Birthright scholars explore their heritage on the continent.

Birthright scholars will visit notable cultural and historic sites like the W.E.B. Du Bois Centre, Black Star Square, Cape Coast Dungeons, beaches and some regions in the country.


They will meet and engage with Ghanaian and diaspora leaders and entrepreneurs from various industries, including fashion, arts, technology, sustainability, cocoa farming and manufacturing, to explore innovation and opportunities offered on the continent.

The collaboration is part of a larger vision of Beyond the Return over the next 10 years, which includes building on the momentum of the Year of Return.

Visit

The Chief Executive Officer of the GTA, Akwasi Agyeman, said through the visit, people who followed those foundations and musicians on social media would be willing to visit the continent, and Ghana especially.

“This is to get more numbers coming in because when that happens, every sector of the economy will benefit from it,” he added.


He said this year, the ministry was expecting about a million tourists, indicating that already, 400,000 tourists had visited the country.

“The peak of these visits usually start from September, and so we are pushing through with the ‘December in GH’ project,” he said.

The CEO and Co-Founder of Birthright Africa, Walla Elsheikh, said Ghana was a gateway for diasporans abroad to visit the African continent in a lifetime.

She noted that they were excited to be building an ecosystem of all their partners in providing an educational experience.


She said they were committed to the growth of international travel by the young African diaspora in showcasing Ghana’s culture and investment potential while deepening the connection between the gateway to Africa and the global diaspora.

“It is time for the African diaspora to reclaim its home,” she stated.

An executive board member of Birthright Africa, Mr Mobisson, said the visit was a major step for black people globally and black Americans “to start to repair, re-heal and re-imagine what our identity is as black people”.

Source: graphiconline

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