GOLD2023

Thousand Currents

Collective Power, Collective Change

San Francisco, CA   |  https://www.thousandcurrents.org/

Mission

Thousand Currents believes the answers to the most entrenched societal challenges around the world rest in the hands of directly affected frontline communities. We raise money to fund those communities, which are organized as grassroots groups and social movements, working in the areas of food, economic, and climate justice. Currently, we support over 130 women and girls, youth,and Indigenous-led groups, alliances, and movements across Africa, Asia and the Pacific, and Latin America with core, flexible, long-term grants and value-added services. Thousand Currents is a bridge-builder that connects donors in the Global North with leaders and solutions in the Global South through relationships of solidarity, trust, and respect — not charity.

Ruling year info

1985

Executive Director

Solomé Lemma

Main address

548 Market St Suite 62831

San Francisco, CA 94104-5401 USA

Show more contact info

Formerly known as

International Development Exchange (IDEX)

EIN

77-0071852

NTEE code info

Alliance/Advocacy Organizations (T01)

Other Food, Agriculture, and Nutrition N.E.C. (K99)

International Development, Relief Services (Q30)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Blog

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Thousand Currents envisions a world where humanity thrives as a creative force that is reciprocal and interdependent with nature, and creates loving, equitable, and just societies.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Climate Justice

Climate change is one of the greatest existential challenges of our time. This is a human crisis that requires us to transform our collective institutions, practices, and behaviors. In order to do so, we must lean into interdependence, well-being, and care for all living species.

Thousand Currents funds movements working to respect, defend, and protect Mother Earth. We support their initiatives to keep a check on rising global temperatures, and live sustainably within planetary boundaries. We partner with climate justice advocates who are building systems that address and transform historical and contemporary systems that perpetuate oppressive, exploitative, and extractive practices. We recognize their contributions in nourishing what we have and looking at the root of the present climate crisis from a social justice perspective.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Children and youth
Ethnic and racial groups
Women and girls
LGBTQ people

Our current global economic system is based on exploitation and profit maximization that sacrifice and harm our most vulnerable communities and the planet. To build towards a vision where all communities are thriving and living with dignity, we need a shift to new economic systems based on justice, care, interdependence, abundance, and regeneration.

Thousand Currents funds community-determined economic systems and practices where the means of production, power and decision-making sits with the workers, where resources are stewarded and distributed equitably so that people can live a dignified life, and where the driving logic of any economic encounter is the wellbeing of the planet and people.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Children and youth
Ethnic and racial groups
Women and girls
LGBTQ people

At a meeting held in Mali in West Africa in 2007, fisherfolk, Indigenous peoples, landless peoples, rural workers, urban movements, migrants, pastoralists, and forest communities from 80 countries issued the Nyéléni Declaration on Food Sovereignty, which defined food sovereignty as “the right of people to healthy and culturally appropriate food produced through ecologically sound and sustainable methods and their right to define their own food and agricultural systems.”

Taking the lead from the Nyéléni Declaration, Thousand Currents funds food systems transformation driven by Indigenous stewards of land and territory and the people who are the primary producers of food for most of the world.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Children and youth
Ethnic and racial groups
Women and girls
LGBTQ people

Thousand Currents’ donor engagement programs shift the balance of power, break down silos, and promote solidarity in the philanthropic sector. We offer resources and programs for donors and philanthropic institutions to shift their behavior and practices towards solidarity-based philanthropy. This includes practicing trust-based giving by providing unrestricted support, directly supporting frontline, local organizations; and committing to an ongoing process of learning and experimentation.

We have offered 10+ Academies since 2014, which have cumulatively created an alumni network of more than 200 participants who include: staff of foundations, grantmaking organizations, or donor networks; trustees and board Members of grantmaking organizations, family philanthropists, individual high net worth donors, impact investors, socially-conscious business owners, social entrepreneurs, and philanthropic and financial advisors.

Population(s) Served
Adults

We explore different models of collaboration in support of transformative grassroots work. Thousand Currents is partnered with grassroots organizations in the Global South, especially southern Africa. Thousand Currents is also a founding member of the Buen Vivir Fund (BVF), an impact investment fund that supports grassroots economic initiatives to build wealth, community power, and wellbeing. Thousand Currents is also a part of the Climate Leaders in Action (CLIMA) Fund, which finances and amplifies grassroots climate solutions to ensure a brighter future for us all.

Population(s) Served
Adults

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Percentage of grantee-partners who found Thousand Currents' partnership model to be very or mostly effective.

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Economic Justice

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Our last organizational evaluation was completed in 2012. Link: http://thousandcurrents.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/2012-Evaluation-and-Learning-Report.pdf

Percentage of grantee-partners who believed that Thousand Currents staff were respectful and transparent and acted with integrity either all or most of the time.

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Economic Justice

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Our last organizational evaluation was completed in 2012. Link: http://thousandcurrents.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/2012-Evaluation-and-Learning-Report.pdf

Percentage of grantee-partners who have seen an increase in the number of people interested in participating in their organization's programs since receiving a grant from Thousand Currents.

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Economic Justice

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Our last organizational evaluation was completed in 2012. Link: http://thousandcurrents.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/2012-Evaluation-and-Learning-Report.pdf

Percentage of grantee-partners who reported meeting all, or more than half, of their goals to address local needs with Thousand Currents' support.

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Economic Justice

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Our last organizational evaluation was completed in 2012. Link: http://thousandcurrents.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/2012-Evaluation-and-Learning-Report.pdf

Percentage of grantee-partners who have been able to develop local, community-based solutions, either totally or to a great extent, since receiving a grant from Thousand Currents.

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Economic Justice

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Our last organizational evaluation was completed in 2012. Link: http://thousandcurrents.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/2012-Evaluation-and-Learning-Report.pdf

Percentage of grantee-partners who have developed stronger links with social change movements internationally.

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Economic Justice

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Our last organizational evaluation was completed in 2012. Link: http://thousandcurrents.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/2012-Evaluation-and-Learning-Report.pdf

Percentage of grantee-partners who have received Thousand Currents' support for 3 years or more and have seen a significant and substantive positive change in their community members' leadership and behavior.

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Economic Justice

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Our last organizational evaluation was completed in 2012. Link: http://thousandcurrents.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/2012-Evaluation-and-Learning-Report.pdf

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Thousand Currents leverages relationships and resources worldwide in support of social movements building loving, equitable, and just futures, while transforming philanthropic and investment practices.

When grassroots groups and social movements have the relationships and financial and intellectual resources they desire, they are strengthened to transform the world by changing cultures, systems, and institutions towards self-determination, justice and equity around the world.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

Financials

Thousand Currents
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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lock

Connect with nonprofit leaders

Subscribe

Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights? Learn More about GuideStar Pro.

Thousand Currents

Board of directors
as of 05/10/2023
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board co-chair

M. Jahi Chappell


Board co-chair

Shilpa Alimchandani

Nwamaka Agbo

Kataly Foundation and Restorative Economies Fund

M. Jahi Chappell

MSU Center for Regional Food Systems

Shilpa Alimchandani

Mookti Consulting

Sihle Dinani

Tides Advocacy

Flavia Jimenez

Advancement Project

Herschelle Milford

Surplus People Project

Ruth Sawyer

Sierra Club

Zanele Sibanda

Fenomenal Funds

Solome Lemma

Thousand Currents

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 10/19/2020

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Black/African American
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

Transgender Identity

Sexual orientation

Disability

No data