When people of color have found themselves marginalized and shunned from mainstream spaces, they’ve historically built rooms for themselves.
That initiative and resistance is what some people of color — Black, Latinx, Asian American and Native American — have taken up by creating digital spaces and organizations for the mental health needs of their communities.
In a world where the mental health workforce is predominantly White — especially in countries where White people are the majority — people of color’s access to mental health services can be hindered by socioeconomics, stigma or language or cultural barriers.
“There’s a long history of building out ecosystems of care in our communities,” said Erica Woodland, the founder and executive director of the National Queer and Trans Therapists of Color Network.
That makes sense: Racial and ethnic minorities, studies have shown, respond well to mental health professionals who are culturally relevant and understanding of