Mental Health Terms
Black Mental Health Support: mental health support (therapy, case management, advocacy, etc.) for members of the Black and African diaspora provided through a trauma-informed, identity and ethnic-specific lens with the goal of increasing access to healing, wellness, and liberation in the Black community
also called psychotherapy or counseling, is the process of meeting with a therapist to resolve emotional issues and mental health issues that arise. (Reference: goodtherapy.org)
All about Mental Health
Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. Everyone has mental health, just as everyone has physical health. Just as we monitor our physical health for any issues and illness that arise, it is crucial that we take care of our mental health.
According to the CMHA, * mental illness indirectly affects all Canadians at some time through a family member, friend, or colleague; if not through themselves. 1 in 5 people will experience a mental health problem or illness in any given year, here in Canada. It is a lot more common than we think. This is especially the case in communities that are marginalized and lack appropriate services, such as the Black community.
Mental health problems can alter your thinking, mood, and/or behavior.
- Biological factors, such as genes or brain chemistry
- Life experiences, such as trauma or abuse
- Family history of mental health problems
Healthy emotional and social development in our early years lay the foundation for mental health and resilience throughout our lives.
Seeking appropriate help is one of the keys to living better lives. Wanasah is here to help with that.
Spirituality holds many definitions as it is often understood and experienced differently. Wanasah’s definition of spirituality, therefore, is flexible depending on the client we are serving and how they experience and relate to spirituality. Dictionary.com defines spirituality as, “the quality of being concerned with the human spirit or soul as opposed to material or physical things.”
Some people understand spirituality to mean the connection of self and identity through meaning and purpose. Others are unable to separate spirituality from faith or religion and define spirituality as a religious connection or connection to a higher being.
Whatever your definition of spirituality is, Wanasah’s staff receive training from trained Spiritual Care Providers in order to support this important aspect of each individual when receiving mental health and addictions support. Share with your counsellor how you define spirituality.
Just as the symptoms of a flu are different from that of a concussion, each mental illness has its own set of symptoms.
However, the following symptoms can be signs of mental health problems:
- Long-lasting sadness or irritability.
- Extremely high and low moods
- Excessive fear, worry, or anxiety
- Social withdrawal
- Dramatic changes in eating or sleeping habits.
In Crisis Resources
*If you are in crisis, please seek help immediately.*
Calling 911 is not always safe for Black families, however if you or your loved one needs immediate crisis support and you choose to contact 911, let them know that your child/youth is experiencing a mental health crisis.
The following are also options for immediate crisis support:
- Gerstein Centre (Toronto and York 416-929-5200)
- Integrated Crisis Programs (other areas 416-289-2434)
- Aboriginal Crisis Intervention (416-531-0330).
- Community Crisis Response Team (416-498-0043)
- Kids Help Phone (1-800-668-6868)
- Toronto Distress Centre 416-408-HELP (4357)
- Mobile Crisis Intervention Team MCIT direct line: 416-658-2030
- Black Youth Helpline (416-285-9944)
- Nisa Helpline (1.855.623.4624)
- Distress Centres of Toronto (416-408-4357) (TEXT: 45645)
- Assaulted Women’s Helpline: 416-863-0511
- Emergency Shelter Central Intake: 416-338-4766
- Pan Canadian Crisis Line: 1-833-456-4566
- Telecare Peel: 905-459-7777
- Telehealth Ontario: 1-866-797-0000
- Toronto Rape Crisis Centre: 416-597-8808
- Streets to Homes Assessment and Referral Centre (129 Peter Street): 416-392-0090
- Toronto Withdrawal Management System: 1-866-366-9513
- ConnexOntario (1-866-531-2600)
- Mental Health Helpline (1-866-531-2600)
- Drug and Alcohol Helpline (1-800-565-8603)
- Ontario Problem Gambling Helpline (1-888-230-3505)