bustAfrican Diaspora Tourism is coordinating with Bahamas Tourism the long-awaited "Peace Retreat" to Bimini, Bahamas on this November 1st-3rd. The AD King and Joe Beasley Foundation are the main organizations helping to convene the retreat. Other leaders of organizations from the Atlanta community and beyond have already signed on for a week-end focusing on peace and non-violence resolutions.

Mwalimu Wesley Kabaila of Los Angeles, Chief of Staff for the Friends of African Union Congresses is helping to convene the retreat and will serve as the retreat's host. Another leader participating is Kenneth Woods, a motivational speaker and youth mentor of 'Coach Speaks' in Atlanta, who says that promoting peace is one of his callings. Gerald Rose of Atlanta, the founder and director of the New Order National Human Rights Organization, is a convener who has been at the forefront for social justice for over 20 years.

Leaders and delegates will also be going to view the newly erected memorial bust of the man who stood for what the peace retreat is all about, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. With the support of Bahamas Tourism Minister Obediah Wilchcombe and the Director of Tourism Anthony Stuart, Kitty J. Pope, publisher of AfricanDiasporaTourism.com and founder of the first African Diaspora World Tourism Awards is working with Leonard Stuart, Bahamas aviation manager in Fort Lauderdale to coordinate the peace retreat.

Pope says that a retreat in Bimini is ideal because this is where Dr. King went to reflect, pray and convene with nature. " This peace retreat is about the same thing. We want to give leaders a chance to get together to reflect on ways to promote world peace. This is not a conference, but a spiritual retreat where we will go to pray and meditate for guidance as King did, " says Pope. Pope first came up with the idea of the Bimini peace retreat for leaders after attending the unveiling of a memorial bust of Dr. King last year on the serene island not far from Florida’s coast. She then talked with Dr. Bbas Onabanjo, co-founder/CEO of the AD King Foundation who had helped to present the world tourism awards event. He joined in because he felt the retreat was in keeping with the missions of the AD King foundation in terms of promoting peace and non-violent conflict resolutions. Dr. Onabanjo later solitcited the support of Joe Beasley, an internatioanal humanitarian and human and civil rights activist who is the founder of the Joe Beasley Foundation.

The bust of Dr. King was erected in the heart of the town, as well as in the mangroves because this is where King wrote two of his most noted speeches. When Dr. King visited Bimini, he was accompanied by boater and prize-winning bone fisherman Ansvil Saunders, who took him out to the mangroves of the island for quiet time to write. “King used to say that he felt like he could reach out to touch the face of God when he was in Bimini,” says Saunders, who will help to host the upcoming "Peace Retreat."

beasley main-banner“I took King to what we call “Holy Ground” in Bimini. Even though King said he lived under the threat of death, he got a sense of peace and relief from pressure when he was here. He said that he did not feel that he would live to be forty years old, and I could see it in his face,” says Saunders. “Still when he observed nature, the waters meeting the sky and all of the greenery in Bimini, King said that he did not see how people could not believe in God. Despite all that he was going through, he still said that he believed in God more than ever when he looked around at the beauty in Bimini.” Dr. babs and king sister

Ms. King and Kitty thumb medium183 217Dr. Onabanjo said this is the reason that he wanted Ms. AD King to visit Bimini. ‘I felt that she need ed to experience some of the tranquility in Bimini and see the bust of her brother-in-law,” he said. “I also feel that if Dr. King came to Bimini, his brother AD probably came with him. Rev. AD King was at the forefront of the civil rights and non-violence resolutions with his brother. That is why, through the AD King Foundation, I would like to go to Bimini to mark a renewal of what both brothers stood for,” says Dr. Onabanjo.  The AD King and Joe Beasley Fundations, in concert with African Diaspora Tourism invite community leaders, who believe in what Dr. King stood for, to join the "Peace Retreat" to Bimini.

Those interested in participating should contact KittyJ. Pope at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 
 
 
Pictured- (left) Ms. Naomi King & Kitty Pope, (widow of AD King),(rt) Dr. Babs Onabanjo and Ms. Christine King, sister of Dr. Mr. Luther King, Jr.