Taking care of your mental health is so important for every human being. But it's also important to note that there are racial and ethnic disparities when it comes to mental health, including in the Black community. According to the American Psychological Association, "Blacks, Latinos, American Indians/Alaska Natives and Asian Americans are over-represented in populations that are particularly at risk for mental health disorders. Additionally, minority individuals may experience symptoms that are undiagnosed, under-diagnosed or misdiagnosed for cultural, linguistic or historical reasons." Add to that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health found that Black adults in the U.S. are more likely than white adults to report persistent symptoms of emotional distress.
If there is any kind of light in this situation, it's that there are so many wonderful mental health and wellness resources and thought leaders supporting the Black community. We've highlighted a few below. If you are BIPOC and need some extra love right now, we hope this list will help. If you're non-BIPOC, we hope you'll follow these accounts, too, as part of your education. This list certainly isn't exhaustive—please DM us with more recommendations and suggestions. We'll be updating this regularly.
Alishia McCullough is a licensed mental health therapist who regularly posts about the mental health and body-image issues of Black women and the specific challenges they face. She is also the author of Blossoming, a book about self-love and healing.
A collective of advocates, yoga teachers, artists, therapists, lawyers, religious leaders, teachers, psychologists, activists, and more, BEAM has a mission to support the mental health and healing of the Black communities. The organization regularly hosts community events that include meditation and a safe space for discussion. It also offers professional development and educational training for students, advocates, activists, and grassroots movements and organizations.
Founded by Taraji P. Henson, The Boris Lawrence Henson Foundation is committed to eradicating the stigma of mental health issues in the African American community. The foundation partners with nonprofit organizations to provide educational programs.
Donate to The Boris Lawrence Henson Foundation here.
Ethel's Club is a membership club with a mission to provide healing spaces for people of color. It has a digital and IRL footprint. Membership includes access to classes, discussions, and wellness and workout sessions.
Brooklyn wellness studio and café HealHaus is an inclusive space where members can take daily yoga or meditation classes, attend workshops, and connect with other members. The studio is currently closed, but will be reopening soon. In the meantime, there are plenty of online program offerings.
Board-certified psychiatrist Jessica Clemons, MD, has an Instagram page that is full of thought-provoking advice and question prompts to help followers look inward. She also hosts a conversation series called #BeWell—guests have included June Ambrose and Kerby Jean-Raymond.
Inclusive Therapists' mission is to "offer a safer, simpler way to find a culturally responsive, social justice-oriented therapist." The organization provides a therapist directory, and the organization can also help match you with a therapist.
Subscription-based meditation app Liberate is designed specifically for the Black community. Members will have access to over 240 meditations, talks, and gatherings for the community. It's $10/month, or $6/month if you pay annually. There is also financial assistance available.
Co-founded by educator, former doula, and author Erica Chidi, Loom is a platform for sexual and reproductive well-being. The organization provides education so you can make empowered choices about your health. For example, its pregnancy-and-postpartum program gives information on birth preferences; negotiation skills for your doctor, midwife, or doula; advice on what to buy or borrow to feel prepared before and after birth; sleep hygiene strategies for you and your baby; and more.
Founded by Rachel Cargle, The Loveland Foundation works to "bring opportunity and healing to communities of color, and especially to Black women and girls." The organization's Loveland Therapy Fund provides financial assistance to Black women and girls seeking therapy. It also partnered with organizations like Therapy for Black Girls, National Queer & Trans Therapists of Color Network, and Talkspace so that Loveland Therapy Fund recipients can have access to a comprehensive list of mental health professionals.
Melanin & Mental Health provides an extensive directory for people of color to find experts and clinicians. The organization also offers free resources and events. There's also a podcast, Between Sessions, featuring two therapists who are looking to "change the face of therapy" and talk about present mental health issues.
Founded by Tricia Hersey, The Nap Ministry promotes exactly what its name says: the healing and liberating power of naps (and rest, in general). The organization facilitates and curates immersive workshops and performance art to do just that.
Founded by Christina M. Rice, OmNoire is a social wellness community for women of color. The organization offers events, retreats, and an online platform to connect women and help them strengthen their bodies, minds, and spirits.
Therapy for Black Girls works to make mental health topics accessible to Black women. The platform helps connect women to therapists and offers a podcast as well. Women can join Therapy for Black Girls Sister Circle, a membership space that gives you access to Q&A sessions with experts, members-only events, and the ability to connect with other community members.
Shine is an app created by two women of color—Marah Lidey and Naomi Hirabayashi—with the mission to make caring for your mental and emotional health easier. Members of the app have access to meditations, bedtime stories, and calming sounds. Plus, you'll get the opportunity to connect with the Shine community.
This article was originally published at an earlier date and has since been updated.
This article is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended to be used in the place of advice of your physician or other medical professionals. You should always consult with your doctor or healthcare provider first with any health-related questions. See our full health disclaimer here.