How long have you been a member of the Black Health Network, and what drew you to CBHN?
Our agency, the Health & Human Resource Education Center, better known as (HHREC), was founded in 1984. We have six community programs, and our core programs are centered around health and wellness. Our most valuable program is the Black Women's Media Project funded through the Mental Health Services Act (MHSA). Our agency was drawn to CBHN via the amazing community advocacy work! HHREC partners with BH Brilliant Minds Project, Global Investment Company, and As You Are Nonprofit Called To Do His Work. Both HHREC and As You Are Called To Do His Work became organizational members this year! We are so passionate about mental health awareness for our people and sharing resources.
What is your current profession?
Executive Director. I have been working in the nonprofit sector for over fifteen years. I specialize in fund development and grant writing.
From your perspective, what barriers exist in achieving health equity for Black Californians?
The barriers are very much rooted in institutional racism. Not understanding how to navigate through the healthcare system and not having the resources and shared education to do so. We need access to more Black doctors, clinicians, and medical providers.
Both in your work and with CBHN, how have you been able to prioritize the health of Black women?
Our agency hosts and facilitates quarterly retreats for Black Women. We ensure that we provide a safe space for Black Women to do health and wellness activities like yoga, meditation, and art therapy. We are able to provide stipends and mental health awareness support. Our Black Women's Media Project produces a yearly digital magazine called "Crossing The Invisible Line."
What inspires you to keep doing the work you do?
My love for God and the Black community. I Pastor Taylor Chapel CME Church in Vallejo. I currently study under Bishop Dr. Charley Hames Jr., who is the new presiding prelate of the Ninth Episcopal District of the Christian Methodist Episcopal Church. I want to make sure Black women have access to peer support and resources for their community. We can do all things through Christ!