Creative Connections, Get Off the Couch and the New Black Wall Street Market Host Mental Health Concert and Conference with to highlighting epidemic-level mental health crisis
On July 15, 2023, starting at 11 am, an epic Mental Health event will begin at the New Black Wall Street Market (NBWSM) to address disparities in mental health treatment and resources for black men and black communities in general.
It is no secret or fantasy that our societal landscape has historically caused black men face a myriad of mental health challenges that stem from various disparities and societal pressures. It is crucial to shed light on the statistics that underscore these disparities, in order to foster greater understanding, empathy, and support for the mental well-being of black men. The true urgency and breadth of the problems are given fresh perspective when viewed through the lens of statistical analysis.
According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), black men are less likely to seek mental health treatment compared to other racial and ethnic groups. In fact, only 30% of black men with mental health issues receive treatment, perpetuating a significant treatment gap. This disparity can be attributed to various factors, including cultural stigma, mistrust of the healthcare system, and limited access to culturally sensitive mental health services. (Source: SAMHSA, 2020)
Other research conducted by the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) reveals that black men are disproportionately affected by social determinants of mental health, such as poverty, unemployment, and exposure to violence, which contributes to higher rates of stress, anxiety, and depression among black men. (Source: NAMI, 2021)
The American Psychological Association (APA) highlights the alarming disparity in suicide rates among black men. In 2020, suicide was the third leading cause of death for black males aged 15 to 24, with rates significantly higher than their white counterparts. These statistics underscore the urgency of addressing the unique mental health challenges that black men face and implementing culturally relevant prevention and support initiatives. (Source: APA, 2020) Furthermore, according to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), only 6.2% of African Americans with mental health disorders receive the necessary treatment, compared to 17.9% of non-Hispanic whites. (Source: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, 2019)
Such a pressing need for mental health awareness and treatment for black men and black communities underscores both the importance and necessity of events like the Mental Health Concert & Conference taking place on Saturday, July 15, 2023 at the New Black Wall Street Market. Join the conversation this Saturday and become a part of the solution.
Meet the Panelists
Black Men Need Healing
Mario Reyes conducts creative writing workshops that focus on mental health through identity narratives. In guided group conversation Reyes provides topics, and writing prompts that assist in self discovery. Intended to leave each participant feeling aligned with their purpose and empowered to continue self affirming.
The credo - “A man is only as great as his discipline” guides my journey for personal development. I believe mastery of self starts with kindness and honesty. Allowing transparency in my journey has helped others in their path."
Jay White provides one-on-one therapy sessions and action items to move individuals beyond their current condition(s). He also provides employment opportunities for his clients because there is a lot of "strama" (stress induced from drama) centered around finances.
"I’m driven by the ability to produce tangible - right now solutions - for immediate needs."
Montoya Smith is the curator of the Mental Dialogue Community Club and weekly podcast where he leads discussions related to issues of race, sex, and culture and he also serves as a premium referral service for experts primarily in mental health and finance. The weekly podcast is free to join along with his monthly Mental Dialogue Live Experience networking event every 3rd Friday at Urban Grind.
"As African Americans I understand we were eventually freed from the traumatic period of enslavement, but as a race or culture never provided the proper treatment for that trauma. We are now living out the experiences of that passed-down trauma and Mental Dialogue is designed to improve the conversation we each have in our own heads, about race, sex, & culture so that we can progress our own lives through connections with others."
Dr. Curtis D. Jasper is an Author-Speaker-Educator, Psychologist & Human Behavior Specialist who uses a
emotional/psycho-social approach to counseling and therapy. He teaches individuals, groups, couples, & families a culturally-based, non-colonized therapeutic approach to relationship challenges, family dynamic challenges, Black men's issues, mental health challenges & emotional wellness. Dr. Curt currently works with clients at his Atlanta-based private practice. He is a widely sought-after emotional wellness expert, keynote speaker and corporate consultant and is considered by many to be a highly relevant Counselor for the Culture. Dr. Curt is also an ordained interfaith Minister & Certificated Master Teacher.
Meet the Legendary DJ Hershey. Since December 1st 1992, he has formed Marshall Arts Music Productions producing some of the hottest up and coming artists in Chicago. Under this production label, he began to build musical relationships with National Recording Artists such as Jive recording artists Public Announcement, Bad Boy Entertainment spoken word artist Malik Yusaf and Avant to name a few. While maintaining a strong music relationship with them, he joined BMI June of 1997 and began to build his production catalog.
Beginning the new millennium 2000 year as a trend setter. As a producer in 2008, he has worked with a major Atlanta based production team to create more amazing music with industry heavy hitters! With hit movies such as “42”, Baby Driver, Crazy Sexy Cool, and the Kiss Radio Show LIVE. Throughout his career, Hershey has maintained a solid consistent commitment to serving his community and bringing awareness the issues black communities face.
The New Black Wall Street Market is a 125,000 square-feet premier retail establishment and events center housing dozens of black-owned businesses located at 8109 Mall Parkway, Stonecrest, GA 30038. This decadent facility features the Pink Lion Jazz Club, Mattie's Tea Room, its own ballroom, a Greenwood performance stage, a Fine Arts District (Art Avenue) featuring world-class black art, an expo hall as well as Aaron's Gourmet Grocery Market featuring chef-inspired cuisine, and health products. To find out more about space rental and upcoming events, visit www.nbwsm.com.