Toronto Deputy Mayor officially proclaims Black Mental Health Week in Toronto Mar 6 – Mar 12

Black Mental Health Week in Toronto. Facebook public photo

Toronto: Black Mental Health Week in Toronto has been officially prs oclaimed by Toronto’Deputy Mayor Jennifer McKelvie (Scarborough-Rouge Park) starting March 6 through to Sunday, March 12, a news release has said.

Various events planned by community groups and agencies throughout the week will focus on the impact of anti-Black racism on mental health.

In partnership with TAIBU, the City launched in 2020 the first Black Mental Health Day and has invested more than $3.8 million in mental health supports for Torontonians through its TO Supports Program and its Mental Health Support Strategy. Of this funding, the City allocated more than $1.2 m illion to 13 Black-mandated agencies to provide culturally-responsive and appropriate mental health supports to Black Torontonians.

“Black Mental Health Week is an important opportunity…to recognize and respond to the gaps across sectors in Toronto with culturally-appropriate supports that address the mental health needs of Toronto’s Black communities,” McKelvie has said.

The week is also a call to action for supporting and accessing culturally-responsive mental health services and programs for Black residents.

The impacts of anti-Black racism and mending of COVID-19 pandemic’s continue to heighten the social, economic and political marginalization of the more than 400,000 people of African descent who call Toronto home.

This is an important step to rally people to take collective action by seeking help for mental health care, supporting organizations or institutions to adopt a plan for increasing accessibility to culturally-responsive mental health, Inspiring community-led activations that advance existing mental health resources, and Sharing personal stories with others to ward off their loneliness.

Once more partnering with TAIBU Community Health Centre, a non-for-profit, community-led organization that serves the Black community across the Greater Toronto Area, the City of Toronto’s Confronting Anti-Black Racism Unit (CABR) leads the initiative and animate spaces in person and virtually across Toronto with various community partners.

Key Black Mental Health Week events include:

  • Monday, March 6 – Panel discussion to launch Black Mental Health Week today, 2 p.m., by TAIBU Community Health Centre, Tropicana Community Services and Strides Toronto focused on this year’s theme “Be You, Be Well”.
  • Tuesday, March 7 – “Hear My Voice, Not My Behaviour”, from 3 to 4 p.m., hosted by Tropicana to discuss how children are experiencing racism, how their voices are being silenced, and how Torontonians can contribute to their healing, empowerment and well-being.
  • Thursday, March 9 – Panel discussion on the Toronto Community Crisis Service program, from 2 to 4 p.m. featuring Mohamed Shuriye, Manager, the City’s Policing Reform Unit, and Raquel Hamlet, Manager, Wellness and Community Crises Response Team, TAIBU.
  • Sunday, March 12 – Closing ceremony, in-person celebration at the City of Toronto Archives, 255 Spadina Rd, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Details about these and other events, including registration information, are available on the Black Mental Health Week webpage .

Through the Mental Health Support Strategy, residents from all backgrounds can access free mental health support from the safety of their own homes through text, online or by phone by simply calling 211 or visiting the 211 website .  This service is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

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