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Young black Americans who want to explore their roots can take a free birthright trip to Africa. A New York City-based a nonprofit organization called Birthright AFRICA offers free trips to Africa for youth and young adults of African descent who want to explore their cultural roots, as CNN reports.

Birthright AFRICA also funds domestic and local exploration trips in cities such as New York City and Washington, where participants live and are only a bus ride away from being educated on their history and contributions in the United States prior to visiting the continent of Africa.

“National Black History Month often focuses on the past, but this is about creating an infrastructure so that we can help people transform their futures,” Birthright AFRICA co-founder Diallo Shabazz told CNN.

“This isn’t about validating black identity. It’s about providing an opportunity for people to explore their ancestry. ”

One of the organization’s goals is giving young scholars the knowledge that the American school system often fails to offer. Participants who take the trip visit cultural sites, museums, organizations, and universities that are led by people a part of the African diaspora to be educated about the “historic and present-day resilience and brilliance of their heritage often lacking in our school curriculums,” according to Birthright AFRICA co-founder and CEO Walla Elsheikh.

Schools that have a higher population of black students are less likely to offer advanced classes, provide counselors, and hire educators with proper licenses. Black students are consequently more likely to miss school days and get suspended.

However, black college students have more access (and freedom) to choose their own courses but study abroad programs often lack diversity and equal opportunities.

“Only 6% of study abroad students are black or of African descent. And only 2% of US managers, leaders, and entrepreneurs are of African descent,” Elsheikh said.

“To address this gap in diversity and talent, Birthright AFRICA is creating the next generation of global leaders and entrepreneurs that are proud of their African heritage, confident in their innovative aspirations and connected to the African continent.”

Glennisha Morgan is a Detroit-bred multimedia journalist and writer. She writes about intersectionality, hip-hop, pop culture, queer issues, race, feminism, and her truth. Follow her on Twitter @GlennishaMorgan.