When it comes to mental health, the Black community is often overlooked and underserved. Resources are scarce or hard to find, making it difficult to receive the support needed for healing. But here’s some good news: there is a wealth of incredible organizations and initiatives designed specifically for African Americans seeking help with their mental well-being. Providing invaluable assistance in guiding us toward healthier lives, here are some resources specifically catering to and offering specialized treatment options for the Black community.
The Boris Lawrence Henson Foundation
• The Boris Lawrence Henson Foundation, founded by actress Taraji P. Henson in 2018, works to raise awareness about mental health issues and reduce stigma surrounding the issue in the Black community.
• The foundation partners with other nonprofits to provide scholarships for Black students pursuing mental health careers and offers free virtual therapy services during COVID-19 pandemic.
• It also seeks to reduce recidivism rates amongst inmates through its initiatives as well as providing mental health services for youth in urban schools due to a higher rate of suicide attempts among black teens than white ones.
The Liberate Meditation App
•In 2019, Julio Rivera, a New York-based software engineer and Afro-Latino, launched the Liberate meditation app specifically for people of color.
• The app includes guided audio meditations discussing topics such as sleep, mindfulness, ancestors and gratitude.
• It also provides meditations on racial discrimination to help users honor their feelings in the wake of microaggressions that can take a toll on mental health over time.
• Other meditations encourage users to think about those who care for them; Black women comprise the largest group of Liberate users according to Rivera.
Black Therapists Rock
•Black Therapists Rock is a Washington, DC-based organization that seeks to “reverse racial trauma through collective healing”.
• The group released its first book in 2018, authored by 15 Black mental health professionals.
• In addition to the book, they also have a Facebook group and therapist directory for the public and mental health professionals alike as well as training events.
Therapy For Black Girls
• Therapy for Black Girls is a platform that seeks to make therapy more accessible and lift the veil on mental health in the Black community.
• The platform includes a podcast hosted by licensed psychologist Joy Harden Bradford which covers topics such as complex PTSD, intimate partner violence, and talking to kids about race.
• It also offers a provider directory, an online “sister circle” community, and blog posts on various related topics.
Therapy For Black Men
•Therapy for Black Men works to change the perception that therapy is a sign of weakness and make it more accessible for Black men and boys.
• The organization provides a national directory of roughly 150 therapists and 30 coaches, specialized in providing culturally competent care.
• Financial assistance is available for economically disadvantaged Black Americans.
• Additionally, there are informative blog posts as well as articles about topics such as relationships and triggers on their website.
Therapy In Color
•Therapy in Color is a mental health organization with the mission of making sure Black, Indigenous, and people of color have access to culturally diverse professionals.
• The brainchild of licensed psychotherapist Ashley Bryant, it strives to de-stigmatize therapy by providing a blog, directory of therapists and resources for managing anxiety and other issues.
• Its goal is to create spaces for healing that are inclusive and accessible.
The Black Mental Health Alliance (BMHA)
•The Black Mental Health Alliance (BMHA) works to support the Black community by providing a database of psychiatrists, a questionnaire for matching patients with therapists, and other resources.
• BMHA programs are culturally relevant and address issues such as race-based trauma, structural racism, and mental health stigma in the Black community.
• In addition to these initiatives, BMHA offers school-based mental health services; fatherhood initiatives; and after-school programs.
Black Mental Wellness
•Black Mental Wellness is a collaborative organization that provides culturally relevant educational resources about Black mental health.
• It offers training opportunities for professionals and students interested in pursuing mental health and wellness careers.
• The organization also provides fact sheets on various mental health issues, including ADHD, anxiety, bipolar disorder and major depressive disorders.
The Loveland Foundation
The Loveland Foundation was established in 2018 by Rachel Cargle in response to her widely successful birthday wish fundraiser, Therapy for Black Women and Girls. Her enthusiastic social media community raised over $250,000, which made it possible for Black women and girls nationally to receive therapy support. Black women and girls deserve access to healing, and that healing will impact generations.
The Loveland Foundation is the official continuation of this effort to bring opportunity and healing to communities of color, and especially to Black women and girls. Through fellowships, residency programs, listening tours, and more, ultimately we hope to contribute to both the empowerment and the liberation of the communities we serve.
•Atlanta-based psychiatrist Tracey Marks, MD is one of the most popular mental health professionals on YouTube with more than a half million subscribers.
• These experts help Black people better understand mental health topics, find professionals who look like them, and connect with other Black Americans interested in learning more about it.
• Viewers have various reasons for watching these videos; some want to address their own struggles while others are looking to learn more about those of loved ones.