Updated: Apr 7, 2020
This month, we honor Black professionals that fight for economic and social justice in the mental health field. Professional Men like Solomon Carter Fuller and James B. Comer. Professional Women like Freda C. Lewis-Hall, Mamie Clark, and Linda James Myers. Society would not be as aware or insisted on finding alternative solutions for Black mental health care without their contributions to the mental health field. As we step into 2020 it is imperative to continue research and implementation of alternative mental health care in order to further the well being and growth of the Black Community. According to Thomas Vance, a postdoctoral and clinical research fellow at the Gender Identity Program at Columbia University Medical Center, psychological difficulties in the Black community is " related to the lack of access to appropriate and culturally responsive mental health care, prejudice and racism inherent in the daily environment[and media] of Black individuals, and historical trauma enacted on the Black community by the medical field. "
Better mental health care in our communities will lead to better people, neighbors, professionals, and parents. As a former dance director for an after school program in Harlem, I've worked with many children who could benefit from the practices of basic mental wellness activities and resources. Learning these concepts at an earlier time could reduce the effects of mental stress and illnesses at later ages.