Activists, advocates and changemakers are the heart of social change in the City of Baltimore. We need them!
So many have committed their lives for the wellbeing of others in community. They are visionary, they are scholarly and they are fearless... but unfortunately, they often don't have access to the support they deserve, to nourish their emotional stamina. People of Color who commit in this way are not only susceptible to the usual side effects of vicarious trauma but also tend to be fueled by personal hardship exacerbated by racial trauma.
The mental health stigma in communities of color make ensuring our leaders get the support they need, all the more challenging. After working with an impassioned group of activists in 2016 following the tragic loss of a fellow changemaker to Baltimore gun violence, 2 things became clearer:
1) We need to offer monthly, culturally relevant, liberation-focused, healing spaces in community, free of charge.
2) The City's changemakers want mental health providers they can go to that they know care deeply and have done the work to "get it." They want to know that they will be in safer space and that the person on the other side of them has the capacity to explore tough topics like racism, equity, bias... they want to know they can bring their whole selves to be healed.
Healing Baltimore Activist seeks to meet this need. Fueled currently by a Baltimore Corp Elevation
award and founded by Liberation-focused psychotherapist, Mind-Body Medicine Practitioner and QiGong Instructor, Shawna Murray-Browne, LCSW-C
, we are currently
-- Hosting 4 Free healing spaces
for activists, change-makers, and advocates of color. Movement modalities (QiGong, Yoga, Dance, Martial Arts) will be paired with Mind-Body skills like Mindfulness meditation. Over dinner, participants will explore tough topics they've expressed via survey that are present challenges in the work
-- Planning to execute an intensive training for mental health practitioners
on everything from anti-racist practice, liberation-focused methods and ways to meet the needs of our community activists.
We need your help to sustain this initiative!!!! So far, two healing spaces are booked to capacity with a waiting list and over 50 therapists are awaiting details for our training intensive!