In 2008 a dynamic think tank of scholars, therapists, clergy, and legal and corporate professionals came together to explore the possibility of designing programs that would offer persons of African descent, and institutions that serve Black communities, comprehensive opportunities to become informed about the social, political, spiritual, and cultural history of pre-colonial, colonial and postcolonial Africa, through firsthand contact and interaction.
Our collaboration yielded a vision and mission now consolidated in the goals and directives of African Pilgrimages Incorporated (API), a 501 (c)(3) organization that aims to cement holistic bridges among people of African descent and foster harmonious relations throughout Africa and the African Diaspora.
We take pride in our unshakable commitment to providing quality programs that are planned after investigative and intensive research and collaboration among API staff and expert affiliates in Africa and the diaspora. Our major program emphasis is organizing and conducting PILGRIMAGES TO SACRED SITES ON THE AFRICAN CONTINENT. The teams of scholars and professional experts responsible for each unique program design take the requisite time to research and collaborate before arranging each pilgrimage.
The API Logo is comprised of three combined symbols that represent our vision and mission: the Adinkra symbol Sankofa, a handshake, and a map of Africa. Sankofa is an expression of the Akan peoples of West Africa. It is derived from an adage which means “it is not a taboo to go back for that which one forgets.” Sankofa is symbolized by a bird with its neck turned backwards, carrying an egg in its beak. The egg shows how fragile the process of retrieval can be; it is a process that has to be handled with care and sensitivity. The egg is also a symbol of life. The handshake depicts reconciliation among persons of African heritage in the Diaspora and on the continent. The blue hand represents the descendants of Africans who were forcibly taken across the ocean during the transatlantic slave trade era, and the black hand represents continental Africans. Our strength as a people will be magnificently multiplied when we are reconciled, when we stand together as sisters and brothers, sons and daughters of Africa. The map of Africa symbolizes Home – actual and/or ancestral - for all people of African descent (from whence we came)!