Black Health and Wellness for Black History Month
This year, Black History Month’s theme is Black Health and Wellness. This initiative has been embraced by organizations, individuals, and professionals across the health spectrum—including the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The 2022 theme considers activities, rituals, and initiatives that Black communities have done to be well.
It is well established that the Black community suffered greater impact from the COVID-19 pandemic, and, historically, has faced inequity with regard to access to care, opportunities in the medical field, and “health deserts” in Black and Brown communities. Self- determination, mutual aid, social support initiatives, visionary leadership, and empowerment have begun to change this. In honor of Black History Month, Wellness Coaches applauds this necessary and crucial development and salutes the leaders and organizations that have helped effect change.
Community Activism and Engagement
Community activism and engagement have been crucial pillars to advancing Black health and wellness in communities. There are too many to list here, but as a symbolic tribute, Wellness Coaches would like to salute a few:
- The Black Doctors COVID-19 Consortium was launched in Philadelphia in order to educate and advocate for African Americans to reduce the incidence of disease and death from Coronavirus.
- Reverend Najuma Smith-Pollard, Assistant Director of Community and Public Engagement at the USC Center for Religion and Culture, mobilized her congregation during the pandemic to provide nourishment and information to communities of color.
- Organizations that advance mental health in the Black community, including Black Men Heal, Therapy for Black Girls, and Alkeme Health.
- Outdoor Afro is a group that helps promote diversity and inclusion in celebrating nature. The group hosts events for hiking, biking, fishing, and other outdoor activities for diverse participants.
- BeTheMatch Foundation is a global leader in blood marrow transplantation, a crucial weapon in the fight against sickle-cell anemia.
Wellness Coaches is proud to salute these visionary individuals and organizations. We stand with all of the health professionals who support health and wellness in Black and Brown communities.
Looking for more resources? Check out this list of Books, Websites, and other Historical Materials and Guides on Black Health and Wellness.