Diaspora Currents

Connecting communities of African descent
and African grassroots groups

Thousand Currents is committed to advancing a culture of diaspora philanthropy that is rooted in solidarity and self-determination. Our diaspora program, Africans in the Diaspora (AiD), builds community and pushes for diaspora African participation in social justice giving.

We connect diasporans to Thousand Currents’ grassroots partners, social justice giving platforms, and multimedia resources to build the diaspora’s philanthropic prowess. We learn from our partners and indigenous values to unleash our collective resources and philanthropic impact. 

Our Story

Grassroots organizations throughout Africa are mobilizing to meet the needs of their communities with courage, strategy, insight, and integrity. Often, they do not receive the support that would allow them to deepen their impact and broaden their movements.

Meanwhile, the African diaspora sends upward of U.S.$60 billion in remittances “home” to our families, villages, places of worship, and communities. Compare this to the approximately U.S.$300 million (in 2010 dollars) that U.S. foundations sent to Africa.

Africans give to their people! What if we directed just one percent of our annual remittances to African visionaries who are boldly organizing to transform their communities, build movements, and advance social transformation?

That was the founding vision of AiD in 2012. AiD emerged as a crowdfunding platform to demonstrate the powerful impact that collective resources, skills, and ideas pooled from Africans—both on the continent and in the diaspora—can have at the grassroots level.

A two-year incubation partnership with Thousand Currents highlighted the two organizations’ shared willingness to learn from indigenous practices and a shared vision for self-reliant African communities. The two organizations merged in 2017, making Thousand Currents the first US-based funder to rearrange its structure to include diaspora engagement.

Questions? Contact Rajiv Khanna, Director of Philanthropic Partnerships, at rajiv (at) thousandcurrents.org.

Grassroots Brilliance

Stories of our partners' impact

Climate Justice | Global

“Water is life ...”

The fight against the Dakota Access Pipeline is a critical fight for all of us around the world.

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Climate Justice | Global

“Water is life ...”

The fight against the Dakota Access Pipeline is a critical fight for all of us around the world.

Africa | Grassroots Leadership

Stepping into power

An emerging young women’s movement is continuing the work of the previous generation of women’s rights leaders in Zimbabwe.

Africa | Food Sovereignty

How to win against Monsanto

What happens when David faces Goliath?