Friday, February 24, 2023

Feel Good Friday - Black Girls Smile

As we make the transition from Black History Month to Women’s History Month, it’s a great opportunity to highlight the work being done by Black Girls Smile.

Founded in 2012 and headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, Black Girls Smile (BGS) “provides gender-responsive and culturally-affirming mental wellness education, resources, and support geared toward Black women and girls.” Their vision, as explained on the website is “a society that focuses on ensuring all young Black women and girls receive the resources and support necessary to lead mentally healthy lives.”

Programs are focused on Black women and girls between the ages of 13 and 25 and include workshops on creating healthy daily habits, cultivating a healthy body image and a customizable educational and wellness program focused on fostering community. You can watch a Today Show segment to see how BGS built community by talking with young women about hair.

Programming available to schools and community centers focuses on group coaching, conflict mediation and suicide prevention. BGS also provides therapy assistance by connecting Black women and girls with culturally, racially, and gender-competent mental health professionals and providing two to six months of financial support for therapy sessions.

In addition to the programs and events, the BGS website has an extensive list of resources. You can find referrals for mental health professionals, crisis hotlines, and support for specialized disorders such as anxiety and depression, addiction and ADHD. There are also links to connect you with mental health outreach and advocacy organizations, Black-focused mental health-centered professional associations, and community partners that focus on empowering Black women and girls like Black Girls Code, Therapy for Black Girls, and Justice for Black Girls.

Since they began, Black Girls Smile has impacted over 10,000 young women across the United States. If you’d like to get involved, there are many ways you can support their mission. Volunteer your time, donate your money and amplify the work of Black Girls Smile on social media. Like their Facebook page and follow them on Instagram and TikTok @blackgirlssmile.

No comments: