A descendent of Kunta Kinteh, the slave at the heart of Alex Haley’s book “Roots,” will be on hand Friday at a showing of the documentary film “Kunta Kinteh Island: Coming Home Without Shackles.”
Lamin Jatta, a descendent of Kinteh and president of the Tacoma-based Kunta Kinteh Family Foundation, will be at the Life Center Church in Tacoma to talk about the film and the foundation’s work to provide clean drinking water and access to health clinics and schools in Gambia, Kinteh’s birthplace.
Also on hand will be Elvin Ross, the film’s producer, a composer and filmmaker for Tyler Perry Studios and owner of Elvin Ross Studios; jazz and blues vocalist Patti Allen; and Dean Curry, lead pastor of Life Center Church.
“As a descendant of Kunta, I feel it is my job to help heal the wounds of racial tension that are still present today, while also helping to support my home country of Gambia, where clean water is limited,” Jatta said in a news release.
The evening will begin with libation, a traditional African ceremony that welcomes visitors to the gathering and honors the ancestors that came before. The evening will include a performance by Allen, a fashion show and silent auction.
The 61-minute unrated film, which features “Roots” cast member Ben Vereen, chronicles Kinteh’s story and the process of renaming Fort James Island in Gambia to Kunta Kinteh Island, in honor of Kinteh’s legacy. The island was used to hold slaves before they were shipped to the Americas.
Kunta Kinteh Island: Coming Home Without Shackles
When: 7 p.m. Feb. 5.
Where: Life Center Church, 711 S. 25th St., Tacoma.
Tickets: $20, with all the proceeds benefiting the Kunta Kinteh Family Foundation. Tickets can be purchased in advance online.