Notebook

Pan-African Community Organizations:

The African Services Committee helps African immigrants of all backgrounds.

New York: African Services Committee (ASC). Based in West Harlem, this nonprofit works to improve the health and self-sufficiency of New York’s African community.  Ethiopian refugees founded ASC in 1981 to help other African refugees, immigrants, and asylum-seekers.  ASC serves 10,000 people a year in health, legal, education, housing and other issues.  Staff come from 12 different countries and speak over 24 languages.  Determined to also make a difference on the African continent, ASC runs 3 clinics in Ethiopia for people living with HIV.  Those interested in accessing ASC’s services can visit their office at 429 West 127th Street (2nd floor), call them at 212.222.3882, or e-mail them here.  Supporters interested in supporting the organization can donate on their website securely.

Chicago: Pan-African Association. PAA is located in Chicago, where it focuses on assisting Chicago’s diverse African community.  Their services include computer vocational training, cultural programming (dance and drumming classes, holiday celebrations, cultural exhibitions, traditional coffee and tea ceremonies), driver’s education, and a citizenship program that encompasses free English classes, tutoring in test preparation, and individual mentorships.  Many more programs are offered, so check out their website if you are located in the Chicago metropolitan area.  If you want to volunteer, visit this website.  Those wanting to send a tax-deductible donation can mail checks to the Pan-African Association at 6163 N. Broadway, Chicago, IL 60660.

Washington, D.C.: African Immigrant and Refugee Foundation. This foundation helps African immigrants and refugees transition to life in American society, particularly cultural and linguistic challenges.  Their services include free multicultural group and individual counseling, survival skills training, education in African cultural awareness, cultural competence training for caregivers, and referrals to others who can help out.  Anyone outside of Maryland or Washington, D.C. from the African continent is also eligible for the organization’s services.  Those still in Africa but preparing to leave can contact AIRF for written information to help them prepare to migrate from their home countries.  AIR is accessible via the Metro’s Columbia Heights station on the Green Line, and their office is located at 1525 Newton Street NW.  You can call them at 202.234.2473.  Social networkers can friend AIRF on Facebook here.  Some of AIRF’s clients include refugees from northern Uganda; you can read some clients’ testimonials on their site.

New York: African Hope Committee.  Like ASC, this community organization is also based in Harlem, on 441 Convent Avenue (Suite 4d).  The African Hope Committee describes themselves as a multilingual information clearing house and referral service, focusing on health, education, immigration and other social support services.  In October, they will hold their annual health summit and gala reception. You can learn about what they’re up to by reading their blog Afrique Hope.  Want to support them? AHC accepts office supplies, furniture, and clothing for women and children.  They are always seeking volunteers to organize and hold activities.  To support them financially (a 100 percent of donations go to program costs), call 212.862.9010.  For more information, e-mail them at info@afriquehope.org.  You can also be their fan on facebook here.

Ugandan Community Groups:

Waltham:  Ugandan American Community Association.  Located at 4202 Sterns Hill Road in Waltham, UACA, and welcome to all, it strives to use their community to help all achieve their American dreams.  If you want to join, contact Martin Katamba at 781.899.7250.

National: Ugandan North American Association.  This national diaspora organization was created in 1988 by two homesick Ugandan women in Georgia around Thanksgiving time.  While others celebrated the holiday with their families, the two women invited all the Ugandans they knew over for turkey.  The dinner turned into a convention full of dinner, dancing, seminars, and networking, with about 200 people attending.  Some traveled from as far as California to attend.  Out of this celebration, UNAA was created, and there are chapters of the organization all over the United States.  UNAA will hold a convention between September 2nd and 5th in Washington, D.C.  To register for the event, click here, and visit this site for the itinerary arranged so far.  To get in touch with UNAA, use this virtual form.

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