“AiD was formed with the belief Africans abroad and on the continent have an important role to play in development in Africa,” said Solomé Lemma, AiD’s co-founder and former executive director. 

Founded in 2012, AiD envisions a self-reliant Africa.

Co-founders Solomé Lemma and Zanele Sibanda created AiD as a platform to build African diaspora philanthropy by connecting Africans in the diaspora and on the continent committed to African-owned, -driven, and -led transformative change. The founding team inclu Stephanie deWolfe

In 2014, AiD became a project of International Development Exchange, now Thousand Currents.  The partnership brought together two organizations committed to community-driven development and social justice philanthropy.

IDEX and AiD worked on targeted joint programming and outreach to engage diasporans in strategic philanthropy and to channel those resources to local, grassroots organizations that are transforming their communities. While AiD functioned as a legal project of IDEX that is eligible for tax-deductible donations, its programs and communications remain independent.

In January 2017, AiD and Thousand Currents formally merged. AiD is now the Diaspora Partnerships program of Thousand Currents, formerly IDEX. 

Our Founders

Solomé Lemma
Deputy Director of Thousand Currents / AiD Founder & Former Director

Why AiD? Why Africa?

I firmly believe that transformational change in Africa requires Africans to take a lead in the process. “Aid” and “development” shouldn’t be exports when there are invaluable skills, resources, and ideas within and from Africa. Read more

Zanele Sibanda

Zanele Sibanda

Zanele Sibanda

AiD Co-founder & Former Advisor 


Stephanie deWolfe
AiD Founding Programs Manager

Why AiD? Why Africa?

Why AiD? Because I believe that transformational change is possible without engaging narratives of powerlessness or profit margin. We need to be bold in our vision of the future of development in Africa. Read more

AiD At A Glance

2012- Africans In the Diaspora is founded by Solome Lemma. Co-founders Stephanie deWolfe and Zanele Sibanda join the team soon after.

2013 - A successful fundraising campaign "New Year New Aid" raises over $36,000 that benefits three grassroots partners. 

2014 - In response to the ebola epidemic, AiD creates the“Africa Responds” campaign. The campaign raises over $100,000 to assist eight grassroots organizations in Liberia and Sierra Leone.

2014 - AiD becomes a project of International Development Exchange (IDEX).

2017 - AiD and Thousand Currents formally merge to become Thousand Currents