I had no idea how I would celebrate International Women’s Day for 2015, but I was blessed to be able to celebrate it with a new title as “International Vice Chair for the Pan African Family Empowerment & Land Preservation Network (PAFEN).” This is truly an honor that pays homage to the Gullah/Geechee land, legacy, and ancestral blood that is within not only Sea Island soil, but that of the deep south in North America. The pulsation of that blood seems to be like a drum signal to call the children of Mother Africa together at just the right time and riycha een de Gullah/Geechee Nation!
President & CEO Theresa White and First Vice Chair Stephen McHayle of the Pan African Family Empowerment & Land Preservation Network, Inc. during the 1st annual board meeting.
The drum truly sounded to bring together a powerful group of family from the Motherland and the African Diaspora to work on protecting the land ownership of people of African descent beginning with that of the Gullah/Geechees. The visionary that began beating the drum is journalist, Theresa White who is the President and CEO of the Pan African Family Empowerment & Land Preservation Network (PAFEN). She chaired the first annual meeting of the new board for this non-profit that has already begun serving the community by immediately launching a $5 million fundraising effort to assist Gullah/Geechees with land taxes which can be supported at http://www.gofundme.com/panafricanfamilyem.
The Pan-African Family Empowerment & Land Preservation Network, Inc.’s “main goal is to simply empower people of African descent with the educational and organizational tools, and the financial resources necessary to protect their ancestral homes and family-owned land from being lost through delinquent tax sales; dishonest land surveys; encroachment by developers and neighboring landowners; forced sales of heirs property; forged deeds; and the unfair use of tax collection laws, etc.
By doing so, we’ll also help to empower them to avoid becoming homeless, or displaced from their property by gentrification, development of new communities, and skyrocketing property taxes.
With control over the roofs above their heads and the land under their feet, they’ll be in a more stable position to concentrate on complex key quality of life issues, including enhanced educational, employment, and economic development opportunities that will break the cycle of generational poverty, and learned dependence on charity, public assistance and foreign aid.
As our organization grows and evolves, we’ll network with other organizations that share our goals and vision, and create a durable funding source for our programs.’
POST OFFICE BOX 706 ST. HELENA ISLAND, SOUTH CAROLINA 29920
Mi still da shout wid de drum! I can hear my ancestors shouting with us as they see us insuring “ebee tub stan pun e oin’t bottom” by lunin de famlee fa keep e land and bringin de Pan African famlee togedda een disya land ob de Gullah/Geechee! Tenki tenki fa disya blessed paat de journey fa Gullah/Geechee land & legacy! May the drum keep beating and lead the family back to the land!