Rites of Passage: Who We Are
can you imagine growing up without understanding
your roots or ancestral history?
e want to tell you about an exciting program with which we are involved: The Rites of Passage Program. The Rites of Passage Program is a Stamford Public School District supported program, designed to assist primarily, but not exclusively, African-American students in accurately learning about and integrating the significance of their African and American heritages.
The coursework requires a twelve-week literature review of African and African-American history replete with guest speakers and instructors, mandatory readings, journal writing, PowerPoint presentations, and a CMT/Cap style final exam.
The program culminates with a trip to West Africa, specifically to "The Door of No Return" at Goree Island. Thousands of Africans stolen from the West African Gambia coast came to this final stop before their perilous voyage through the middle passage and into chattel slavery.
By passing through "The Door of No Return" the students invalidate the legacy of slavery and reconnect with the ancestral heritage, linking their past to their present. We have seen the positive changes in the educational performance of our alumni students, and also the greater impact they have had on our community and the possibilities for their future.
We the educators, hypothesized that we can help produce healthier young people who now understand slavery was not their beginning, nor the principal means of defining the African-American experience, but instead a real, limited part of a legacy of faith, pride, and endurance that spans millennia.
For additional information about our program please contact me by email at email@example.com. You may also contact Sharon Wade, our Communications Coordinator, at 203-977-4735 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for your anticipated support!
Mr. Rodney Bass, Director
Rites of Passage