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African Organizations in the U.S.

New York City








New Hampshire


Washington, D.C.

Mission & History

Our Mission

Founded in 1981 by Ethiopian refugees to give a helping hand to other newcomers, today African Services is a multiservice human rights 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 more than 6,500 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 three health and community development centers 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.


Asfaha Hadera, Founder 
Joyce Ollunga, Executive Director 



Cristian Auqui, Paralegal 

Mulusew Bekele, Director of Program Operations

Emily Bishop, Health Education Officer

Bath Bilissalou, Legal Assistant 

Sarah Corsico, Legal Advocate/ Pro Bono Coordinator 

Thandron Dadaille, Finance Assistant

Aida Diallo, Supervising Family Case Manager

Aida Diallo-Diagne, Director of Housing                                       

Ralford Goulbourne, Fiscal Manager

Rokhaya Gueye, Testing Center Assistant

Gabriel Guimaraes, Staff Attorney

Halimatou Konte, Testing Center Coordinator

Amanda Lugg, Director of Advocacy and LGBTQ Programming

Adizatou Maiga, Family Case Manager

Bobby Molano, Legal Assistant

David Munoz, Paralegal

Youma Nafo, Food Pantry Coordinator                                        

Daouda Ndiaye, Patient Navigator

Lucia della Paolera, Department of Justice Accredited Representative

Kyle Pearce, Senior Attorney 

Zachary Phan-Everson, Staff Attorney, Immigrant Community Law Center   

William Pugliese, Staff Attorney 

Paola Roche, Administrator 

Danney Salvatierra, Legal Advocate

Aminat Sabak, Senior Attorney and Pro Bono Coordinator 

Franco Torres, Supervising Attorney

Bakary Tandia, Case Manager

Adama Traore, Patient Navigator