Though a lot of Canadians have mental health issues, certain groups encounter unique challenges due to discrimination, systemic racism, socioeconomic status or social exclusion. Furthermore, the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted unequally and exacerbated mental health issues within these equity-deserving communities.
Recently, during Black History Month, Minister of Mental Health, Honourable Carolyn Bennett, accompanied by the Honourable Marci Ien, Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Youth, announced around $1.5 million in funding to support the mental health of Black individuals and communities.
Black Mental Health Canada is getting $1.1 million for its project to build capacity among clinicians to provide culturally safe and appropriate mental health counselling, and support to Black clients that have encountered racial trauma or race-based traumatic stress.
The project will reach mental health clinicians in Canada, including both Black providers giving treatment to Black individuals and non-Black providers who work in areas with high proportions of Black clientele.
Also, Mental Health Services for Black Youth will receive $400,000 for its project to develop Black-centric, trauma-responsive community support services in Regent Park community of Toronto.
This initiative is expected to take a community-driven participatory approach to the development of culturally-safe, equity-focused mental health services that are culturally-safe and equity-focused. It will also support Black youth and their families in preventing and mitigating the impacts of different forms of trauma aggravated during the COVID-19 pandemic and post-pandemic recovery.
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