RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — The Community Healing Network (CHN) is hosting a three-day summit in Richmond this week which examines slavery and its impact today. The 2019 Valuing Black Lives Summit offers an opportunity to “walk in the footsteps” of enslaved Africans who were forced to come to Virginia 400 years ago.

“The times that we’re in is the bubbling up of problems from 600 years in the world and 400 years in the United States,” said Enola Arid, the founder of the Community Healing Network.

The summit kicked off Tuesday with the CHN touring several spots across the area, including a walk along the James River to retrace the steps of enslaved Africans.

“I wanted to learn more,” one visitor named Dominic Coleman explained. “I didn’t know about this either before we got here. I wanted to walk in the same steps as my ancestors walked.” 

The purpose of the summit is to show those who have gathered a bit of history of what their ancestors had to endure during the slave trade and how those wounds still impact the world.

“God created us all equal. But, over the last 600 years and 400 years in the United States, we have been deemed, less than,” Arid told 8News.

You can find more information about the summit here.