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Mohawk College research to advance inclusive mental health support for Black Canadians

Krissy_close up

Mohawk College is working with mental health professionals, health professionals, community leaders, and persons with lived experience to develop a framework for preventative mental health care specifically tailored to Black Canadians.

Black Canadians face several barriers to accessing mental health services, including stigma, financial constraints, difficulty securing family doctors, lack of culturally sensitive care, and systemic issues within the healthcare system that perpetuate inequities.

This applied research project, under the direction of Mohawk College researcher Dr. Krissy Doyle-Thomas, will involve stakeholders from within the Black community to offer a framework for a psychoeducation program specifically tailored to meet the unique needs of Black Canadians. The psychoeducation program will include elements of cognitive behaviour therapy, group therapy, education and more. The goal is to empower the Black community with the knowledge and tools needed to support illness awareness, treatment adherence, early detection signs, and consistent lifestyle practices.

“The ultimate goal of our research collaboration is to provide mental health service providers with a tool to effectively support the mental well-being of Black Canadians,” says Dr. Doyle-Thomas, a Professor in Brain Disorders Management, and Mental Health and Disability Management at Mohawk College. “By developing this framework in close collaboration with the community, it ensures the program will be culturally responsive, inclusive, and highly relevant to the challenges and experiences faced by Black Canadians in relation to their mental health.”

The project is supported by funding from a Planning and Dissemination Grant from the federally-funded Canadian Institutes of Health Research.