Health & Wellness Newsletter – Honoring Black History Month in March
March 5, 2024

Health and Wellness Newsletter
Photo of two black women smiling on a bench

This past February, we honored Black History Month with a profound appreciation for Black individuals’ resilience, achievements, and contributions throughout history. This month serves as a reminder of the struggles overcome, the triumphs celebrated, and the ongoing journey toward equity and justice.

According to SAMHSA’s 2018 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, Sixteen percent (4.8 million) of Black and African American people reported having a mental illness, and 22.4 percent of those (1.1 million people) reported a severe mental illness in the past year. 

The significant disparities in access to adequate mental health resources for African Americans should be acknowledged. In this newsletter, we will be sharing resources to advocate for equitable access to culturally competent care. Let us continue to work together to create a future where Black mental health thrives.

Explore these resources compiled by Mental Health America:

Black Emotional and Mental Health (BEAM)

  • Toolkits & Education: graphics on accountability, self-control, and emotional awareness; journal prompts; articles on Black mental health
  • Videos: trainings and webinars, recorded and available for free

Therapy for Black Girls: online space encouraging the mental wellness of Black women and girls; referral tool to find a therapist in your area

Therapy for Black Men: primarily a therapist directory for Black men seeking therapy; includes some resources and stories.

The Boris Lawrence Henson Foundation: changing the perception of mental illness in the African-American community by encouraging people to get the help they need; focuses on stigma/self-stigma reduction and building trust between Black people and the mental health field.

In This Newsletter:

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STEP Forward with Data Framework

The Early Childhood Data Collaborative (ECDC) at Child Trends has recently released the System Transformation for Equitable Preschools (STEP Forward with Data) Framework to support preschool system leaders’ data use. The STEP Forward with Data Framework is designed to help these leaders use data to promote greater equity at every step of the preschool system by better understanding the experiences of preschool children, families, and the workforce.

Photo of Black Students of California United

Black students find support, culture, purpose through peer group

Black Students of California United, a Fresno-based nonprofit, empowers Black middle and high school students to address pressing issues like mental health, gun violence, and school funding through peer-driven initiatives. The organization fosters authentic connections and relatable guidance, sparking political engagement and promoting mental well-being among young Black people statewide. With a focus on social justice and health, the group’s diverse initiatives include a youth senate, health ambassadors, and mentorship programs, aiming to uplift and inspire Black youth to improve their communities.

Save the Date

California’s Expanded Learning Infrastructure: Partners in Health, Mental Health, and Substance Use Prevention, Intervention, and Treatment Webinar
Tuesday, March 27, 2024, 10:30 AM - 12:00 PM

Join the California AfterSchool Network (CAN), the California Department of Education’s Opportunities for All Branch,  County Leads from the System of Support for Expanded Learning (SSEL) and other County Office of Education leaders, Advocates for Human Potential (AHP), the California Institute of Behavioral Health Solutions (CIBHS), and Community Based Organization leaders from the Boys and Girls Club to learn about the states vision for school-based wellness, and the potential of state, county/regional, and site-level partnerships to support access to school-based and school-linked health, mental health, and substance use prevention, intervention and treatment.

Photo of three people looking to the left is a new resource that provides access to support for issues with mental health, drugs, or alcohol. Explore how to find care near you, learn about treatment options, support for coping with issues, and how you can help others around you. There is also live chat, call, and text for those that need immediate support.

National Nutrition Month logo

March is National Nutrition Month!
March 2024

March is National Nutrition Month! Next month, everyone is invited to learn about making informed food choices and developing healthful eating and physical activity habits.

This year’s theme is “Beyond the Table,” which addresses the farm-to-fork aspect of nutrition, from food production and distribution to navigating grocery stores and farmers markets, as well as home food safety and storage.

Learn more about National Nutrition Month and ways you can celebrate on their website!

COVID test graphic

Order FREE COVID-19 Tests!
Order by February 29, 2024

The free At-Home COVID Testing Program is ending this February. Do not miss out on FREE COVID-19 tests for your household. Every home in the U.S. is now eligible to order an additional 4 FREE at-⁠home tests.

If you did not order tests this fall, you may place two orders for a total of 8 tests. You can order tests at