Tag: Chirlane McCray

NYC 1st Lady Chirlane McCray Promotes Mental Health in Black Communities with Launch of “Brothers Thrive”

First Lady Chirlane McCray (photo via twitter.com)

via newsone.com

The City of New York is aiming to push conversations surrounding mental health in the Black community forward. First lady Chirlane McCray announced the launch of a new program to help African American men cope with mental health issues, the Manhattan Times reported.

The initiative, dubbed Brothers Thrive, is a part of a larger effort launched by the city called ThriveNYC, the news outlet writes. McCray’s own experiences growing up inspired her to create Brothers Thrive. She witnessed her own father battle with depression during her childhood. “As a child, I didn’t understand why, even on Christmas Day, there just wasn’t much joy in our home,” she said. “My family story is a common one. We are all touched by mental illness and addiction, each and every one of us.”

The initiative will extend support and services to Black men battling mental health issues and will also provide free Mental Health First Aid training for Black men. The program aims to directly address the stigma around seeking help. A group of organizations that includes the 100 Black Men, Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., Omega Psi Phi Fraternity,  Iota Phi Theta Fraternity, Inc., Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc., and the Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc., have partnered with the city on this initiative.

“People often feel more comfortable talking about these topics when they’re among people who look like them, people who they feel some kinship or affinity with,” said McCray. “It’s just easier to relax and know that their words will have meaning and validity and credibility.” Brothers Thrive is aiming to train 3,000 New Yorkers in Mental Health First Aid over the next year.

Many programs have been created to address mental health issues in the Black community. Last year, Nikki Webber Allen created a non-profit called I Live For as an avenue to break the cultural barrier surrounding mental illness.

Source: https://newsone.com/3795795/brothers-thrive-black-men-mental-illness-chirlane-mccray/

NYC Spends $4.6M to Offer Mental Health Services for Pre-K and Daycare Centers

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New York’s First Lady, Chirlane McCray, says it is vital to act early on mental health issues and that “it is easier to grow a healthy child than to mend a broken adult.”  (JOE MARINO/NEW YORK DAILY NEWS)

New York City First Lady Chirlane McCray said the network fits into the administration’s larger, ThriveNYC project to boost mental health across the city.

“Everyone will face hardship. That is a part of life,” McCray said. “By acting early to help our youngest New Yorkers understand and manage their emotions, we can better equip them to handle stress, prevent or lessen the severity of future mental health challenges, and set them up for success. It is easier to grow a healthy child than to mend a broken adult.”

Under the program, staffers at nearly 400 pre-kindergarten and day care sites will get added training and classroom materials to support kids’ mental health.

Staffers at the pre-K and day care sites will also be able to refer kids to the seven Mental Health Network clinics, where those kids will have priority for services.

More than 3,000 kids and their families are expected to take part at first in the project that eventually aims to give mental health services to any of the city’s 100,000 universal pre-K students and city day care users who might need them.

The locations of the clinics are still to be determined, but there will be two in Bronx, two in Brooklyn and one each in the other three boroughs.  The city schools have also invested $47 million in programs to improve school climate and boost students’ mental health under the de Blasio administration.

Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña said pre-K staffers will be better equipped to help students build strong foundations for success in school and life thanks to the training they will receive under the Mental Health Network.  “Teachers and school administrators play an important role in nurturing a child’s social and emotional growth,” Fariña said.