Roughly 17% of mental health professionals are people of color. This is not one single race, this number includes all races outside of those that identify as white.
African Americans are 20% more likely to be the victims of serious mental illness but only 25% have sought mental health help. Native Americans are 40% more likely to commit suicide. Less than 10% of Asian Americans sought mental health help within the past year. And the number of Hispanic males who commit suicide each year has not decreased.
While there are several reasons why these numbers exist, there are a couple of things we do know. The first, is that we need to continue the conversation and education around mental health in the communities most impacted. And we also know that having a mental health professional that looks like you increases your likelihood of continuing to go.
One of our responses is to provide scholarships to young men and women of color who are completing their education in the field of mental health. Our goal is to provide $10,000 worth of scholarships to those young men and women who are leading the charge to erase the stigma of mental health in their communities.
Along with education, we feel this step will further our initiative to erase the stigma.