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Mission & History

Our Mission

Founded in 1981 by Ethiopian refugees to give a helping hand to other newcomers, today African Services is a multiservice agency based in Harlem and dedicated to assisting immigrants, refugees and asylees from across the African Diaspora.

Our programs address the needs of newcomers affected by war, persecution, poverty, and global health inequalities. We provide health, housing, legal, educational, and social services to 12,500 people each year. Staff representing more than 20 countries and speaking over 25 languages provide culturally and linguistically relevant support to this diverse and growing community.

Expanding HIV prevention and access to AIDS treatment and care is central to our mission. African Services has taken this work from Harlem to the frontlines of the global pandemic and now operates five HIV clinics in Ethiopia.

We are committed to challenging stigma and discrimination at all levels and supporting individuals, families and communities most impacted by AIDS. Combined with life-saving treatment, this care and support has transformed thousands of lives.

Our History 

 

African Services Committee was begun in 1981 in Bronx basement apartment by Asfaha Hadera. Asfaha arrived in the United States having experienced first-hand the realities of refugee life. Asfaha fled his home country of Ethiopia in 1977 for refugee camps in Sudan, before emigrating to the U.S. in 1979. Upon arrival, he saw a lack of assistance for others, like himself, who were refugees from conflicted areas throughout Africa. So, he established the organization to give a helping hand to other African newcomers and, with Kim Nichols, began refugee resettlement programs in New York City.

As immigration from the continent increased and our offices expanded to their current home in West Harlem, and African Services' priorities widened to include broader support services for African immigrants coming to the United States including:

 

  • HIV/STD/TB/Hepatitis B and C testing

  • Diabetes & Blood Pressure Testing

  • Hospital Escort & Medical Interpretation

  • Legal Services & Immigration assistance

  • Case Management & Family Support

  • Housing Placement Assistance

  • Independent Living Skills Program

  • Food Pantry & Nutrition Support

  • ESL Classes

  • Community Outreach & Health Education

  • Advocacy & Policy Work

The services have expanded to serve over 12,000  people each year in our Harlem location and continues to grow each year.

Above photo of ASC Founder and Co-Executive Director, Asfaha Hadera courtesy of Vitamin Angels/ Matt Dayka

Our Staff

African Service's staff and board members reflect the communities we serve, representing more than a twenty countries and speaking over twenty-five languages.

We possess diverse backgrounds and expertise in medicine and nursing, epidemiology and biostatistics, social work, law, education, policy advocacy and community organizing, program development and evaluation, development and communications. Together, they work to meet the changing needs of the African community and have remain a trusted partner to immigrant communities in the New York City and an ally to people living with HIV around the world.

Leadership

Asfaha Hadera, Founder & Co-Executive Director
Kim Nichols, Co-Executive Director 

 

Staff

Niat Amare, Legal Advocate

Mulusew Bekele, Director of Program Operations

Emily Bishop, Health Education Officer

Corina Bogaciu, Supervising Attorney

Claudette Bontemps-Francois, Supervising Case Manager

Simone Burrell, Data Entry Specialist

Carlos Camilo, Testing Center Assistant

Anthony Cruz, Paralegal

Thandron Dadaille, Finance Assistant

Aida Diallo, Supervising Family Case Manager

Mariama Diallo, Housing Placement Assistant 

Aida Diallo-Diagne, Director of Housing

Yuhanissu Godje, Paralegal                                              

Ralford Goulbourne, Fiscal Manager

Jessica Greenberg, Staff Attorney

Rokhaya Gueye, Testing Center Assistant

Gabriel Guimaraes, Staff Attorney

Tsion Gurmu, Equal Justice Work Fellow

Maura Heron, Staff Attorney

Halimatou Konte, Testing Center Coordinator

Amanda Lugg, Director of Advocacy

Adizatou Maiga, Family Case Manager

Youma Nafo, Food Pantry Coordinator                                        

Daouda Ndiaye, Patient Navigator

Fatime Ndiaye, Case Manager

Eirik Omlie, Communications Director            

Paola Roche, Administrator

Nataliah Rodriguez, Housing Placement Assistant        

Rebecca Soroka, Staff Attorney                                     

Deirdre Stradone, Staff Attorney

Bakary Tandia, Case Manager

Adama Traore, Patient Navigator

Our Board

African Service's staff and board members reflect the communities we serve, representing more than a twenty countries and speaking over twenty-five languages.

We possess diverse backgrounds and expertise in medicine and nursing, epidemiology and biostatistics, social work, law, education, policy advocacy and community organizing, program development and evaluation, development and communications. Together, they work to meet the changing needs of the African community and have remain a trusted partner to immigrant communities in the New York City and an ally to people living with HIV around the world.

Board of Directors

Jobs & Internships

African Services employs individuals with a range of skills, language abilities and professional backgrounds to provide culturally-appropriate outreach and meet the needs of diverse African immigrants in New York City. We place a particular emphasis on building an inclusive and collaborative work environment.

Interested in volunteering at ASC? Please click here.

Position Opening:

Volunteers & Interns:

TESOL/Literacy Volunteer

Please submit a resume and brief note identifying your specific skills and where you feel you can contribute to our programs to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . Please include the time you are able to commit and availability.

Volunteer opportunities are also available for individuals and groups interested in supporting the organization's current work. Interested in volunteering at ASC? Please click here.

To provide equal employment and advancement opportunities to all individuals, employment decisions at African Services are based on merit, qualifications and skills. African Services does not discriminate in employment opportunities or practices on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, religion, age, disability, sexual orientation, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.

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