Below is a growing list of resources related to coping with racism and trauma on individual, interpersonal/family, community and national/global levels. The resources are collected and maintained by the Department of Community and Human Services Racial Equity Core Team and Alexandria’s trauma-informed community network, Resilience Alexandria: Inform. Support. Elevate. (RAISE). The Core Team and RAISE invite community members and residents to submit resources from non-profits and those that are free of charge . The City’s provision of these resources is not a statement of endorsement.
Resources to Support an Individual
This Continuum of Resources for Coping with Racism and Trauma begins at the individual level – the things that individuals can do to help them cope with racial trauma and learn how to support those experiencing racial trauma. Taking care of yourself (me) is an important first step towards taking care of your loved ones and community (we). Below are some coping resources for individuals.
Resources for Black Mental Health and Racial Healing
- Racial Equity Tools is designed to support individuals and groups working to achieve racial equity. This site offers tools, research, tips, curricula and ideas for people who want to increase their own understanding and to help those working toward justice at every level – in systems, organizations, communities and the culture at large. Visit their webpage on Racial Reconciliation and Racial Healing to find content and key sites related to reconciliation and racial healing.
- Project LETS is
a national grassroots organization and movement led by and for folks with lived
experience of mental illness, Disability, trauma, & neurodivergence. “We
specialize in building just, responsive, and transformative peer support
collectives and community mental health care structures that do not depend on
state-sanctioned systems that trap our folks in the medical/prison-industrial
complex.” Check out their Race and Mental Health
page for resources and information for Black Community, Asian American and
Pacific Islander Communities, Alaska Native and Indigenous Communities, Latinx
Communities, and white folks.
- SELF magazine features a collection of mental health resources for Black people on this Mental Health webpage. There is solidarity and support out there if you need help processing what’s happening. Here’s a list of resources that may help if you’re looking for mental health support that validates and celebrates your Blackness. It starts with people to follow on Instagram who regularly drop mental health gems, then goes into groups and organizations that do the same, followed by directories and networks for finding a Black mental health practitioner. Lastly, they have added a few tips to keep in mind when seeking out this kind of mental health support, especially right now.
- So often the stigma surrounding mental health issues and therapy prevents Black women from taking the step of seeing a therapist. Therapy for Black Girls is an online space dedicated to encouraging the mental wellness of Black women and girls. This space was developed to present mental health topics in a way that feels more accessible and relevant.
- TherapyForBlackMen.org is a
directory to help men of color find a therapist. Using the directory, men can
search by therapist location, specialization, and many other criteria.
Searching by location, the results will include the therapists near you and
will display their credentials, location, and the issues they treat. TherapyForBlackMen.org
will soon be supporting free therapy sessions for Black Men who do not have
insurance or Medicaid/Medicare.
Immigration, Latinx/Hispanic Communities, and Mental Health
- APA supports practical, humane immigration policies that consider the needs of immigrants, and particularly immigrant families, while also recognizing the need to balance these policies with national security and public safety. The APA’s Psychology Help Center is a resource featuring information related to psychological issues affecting your daily physical and emotional well-being. Refer to their fact sheet series to learn how psychologists can help. Need to talk to someone? Check out their Crisis Hotlines and Resource pageto find a specialist who is available for confidential telephone counseling.
- Mental Health America (MHA) works nationally and locally to raise awareness about mental health and ensures that those at-risk for mental illnesses and related disorders receive proper, timely and effective treatment. MHA incorporates culturally competent strategies to ensure that it is effectively addressing the treatment and psychosocial needs of consumers and families with diverse values, beliefs, sexual orientations, and backgrounds that vary by race, ethnicity and/or language. Check out theirLatinx/Hispanic Communities and Mental Health page for a complete list of Spanish language materials, including our Spanish-language screening tools.
- CrisisLink provides 24/7 crisis intervention, suicide prevention and support to foster self-sufficiency by providing problem-solving skills and information on community resources so callers can better cope with emotional trauma, personal and family crises. Text "CONNECT" to 855-11 or call 703.527.4077.
Oak Meditation (black-owned and focused on serving black/brown people)
- Oak helps you decompress by transforming your meditation practice from an experiment into a habit. Oak supports you from your first session to your 500th, with mindful, loving-kindness, and sleep meditations as well as unguided sessions and breathing exercises. Individualize your meditations by duration, and customize with silence or calming background sounds. Oak tracks your progress and encourages you to continue building a healthy meditation practice. This app is free.
- Please enjoy this complimentary meditation led by Lauren Ash. Subscribe to their newsletter here.
Dive in Well (black owned and focused on serving black/brown people)
- Dive in Well creates meaningful opportunities for change-makers to facilitate on and offline conversations as a catalyst for change and accessibility. Dive in Well has expanded their offerings to both offline and online experiences, resources and tools to empower both consumers and participants who believe in soul-centered wellness so we may all be well.
Racial Trauma and Wellness Resources
- In this era of having
witnessed multiple police killings of African American boys and men and girls
and women either directly or vicariously through media accounts, communities of
Color may experience post trauma symptoms. The Institute for the Study and
Promotion of Race and Culture Alumni Board has released a toolkit for managing
symptoms at #racialtraumaisreal which is available to download in manuscript
form (2015) or as an infograghic.
- Dear Black Women is an affirmation movement for Black women by Black women. Find affirmations, self-care tips, and join the movement here.
- Black Girl Health (BGH) is a digital outreach organization designed to help minority women and girls live a healthier lifestyle through its online services including “Blackgirlhealth.com,” its digital magazine, social media awareness campaigns, commercials, outreach events. BGH was founded in 2014, by television journalist Porcha Johnson. BGH focuses on preventative care nutrition and fitness. BGH is committed to online outreach targeting minorities in underserved areas. Their mission is to reduce the health disparities among minorities and communities with the highest risks.
Stay healthy by sleeping regularly, eating right, avoiding alcohol and other drugs, exercising, relaxing and doing things you enjoy.
- GirlTrek’s is pioneering a health movement for African-American women and girls grounded in civil rights history and principles through walking campaigns, community leadership, and health advocacy. GirlTrek’s mission is to inspire one million African-American women and girls to develop a daily habit of walking. Check out their 100 Radical Acts of Self-Care, Black History Bootcamp, COVID-19 Self Care Plan, and more by visiting their website.
Instagram accounts: @thequii_tofitness, @alittletaeste, @fancy85fit
Podcasts that Discuss Race and Racism in America
- Elle magazine wants you to check out these 10 podcasts, make your anti-racist reading list, and commit the remainder of quarantine and beyond to studying possibilities for racial equity.
More Podcasts that Discuss Race
- Code Switch
- Seeing White
- Therapy for Black Girls
- All My Relations [Native America]
- Her Space
- Black Girls Heal
- Intersectionality Matters!
- It's Been a Minute with Sam
Is This Racist?
- Come Through with Rebecca
- the Nod
- Asian Enough
- Identity Politics
- Still Processing
- Pod Save the People
- The Stoop
- Since the opening of the National Museum of African American History and Culture, the number one question people ask us is how to talk about race. In 2014, the museum launched its signature program, “Let’s Talk! Teaching Race in the Classroom.” The Museum’s website now provides tools and guidance to empower your journey and inspire conversation. Parents, educators, and people committed to equity can start their journey by exploring one of the Talking About Race topics, including self-care, being anti-racist, racial healing, and more here.
Guide to Allyship
- One way to jumpstart racial equity work is by reviewing its
core concepts. These include: race, ethnicity, racism, white privilege and
internalized racism. To create effective strategies that contribute to progress
on addressing racial inequities or improving race relations, it helps to know
how race is constructed, and to understand how racism works, how privilege is
embedded in our systems, and how internalized racism and superiority are
created and maintained. Check out Racial Equity Tools webpage on Whiteness
and White Privilege to learn more about these concepts, access resources,
research, and more.
- Dr. Robin DiAngelo, author of books, What Does It Mean To Be White? Developing White Racial Literacy, and White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard For White People To Talk About Racism, compiles many resources, tools, handouts, and more here.
For Further Reading on Black Mental Health and Race Based Traumatic Stress
- This issue brief, released by the Family and Children’s Trust Fund of Virginia, explores how racial trauma intersects and exacerbates trauma caused by family violence. In order to do so effectively, the brief reviews issues of structurally embedded inequalities, individual actions that cause racial trauma, the effects of racial trauma on communities of color, and strategies for individuals, communities, professionals and organizations to prevent and mitigate race-based traumatic stress. Accompanying resources for this issue brief are available at www.fact.virginia.gov/systems-of-trauma.
- Ibram X. Kendi, author of How to Be an Antiracist, shares his reading list that is composed of a combination of classics, relatively obscure works and a few of recent vintage. “Think of it as a stepladder to antiracism, each step addressing a different stage of the journey toward destroying racism’s insidious hold on all of us.”
Actions You Can Do TODAY
- Practice Self-Care (me) so you can engage in community care (we)
- Follow these "Racism Recovery Plan Steps" from the Institution for the Study and Promotion of Race and Culture
- Learn about the detrimental effects of race-related stress and of some ways to cope with race-related stress at school or work
Interpersonal and Family
If you’re an individual who is practicing self-care and ready to care for others, you can explore the coping resources on the Continuum dedicated to engaging with your friend or family member. At the Interpersonal/Family level, you’ll find resources that are intended to help you engage in conversations about race and racism with children, resources that will help your family meet their basic needs, and resources for allies who want to support their colleague of color.
Resources for Meeting Basic Needs
- This one-page infographic, brought to you by the Department of Community and Human Services, provides ways to access their services during the COVID-19 pandemic. Find numbers for child protective services, child and family behavioral health services, domestic violence hotlines
Resources for Talking to Kids about Race and Racism
- The American School Counselors Association (ASCA) provides a plethora of resources, including webinars and ASCA standards for guiding ethical, equitable, and inclusive school environments and school counseling programs, that are helpful in addressing issues of systemic and institutional racism with students. School counselors are advocates for the equitable treatment of all students in school and in the community. School counselors must be prepared to talk to students about race issues and anti-racism.
- The Center for Racial Justice in Education complied a list of resources for talking to kids about race, racism, and racialized violence. It is not meant to be exhaustive and will be continually updated as they are made aware of more resources.
Resources for Assessing Racial Stress and Trauma
Actions You Can Do TODAY:
- Connect with justice focused friends and colleagues
- Listen to communities of color. Understanding what Black, Brown, or Indigenous people need to thrive is crucial right now
- Spread your compassion and empathy
If you’re ready to engage in local community activities and conversations that will collectively move us towards healing and racial justice, then check out these resources below that fall on the Community-level of the Continuum for Coping with Racism and Trauma.
Resources for the Classroom
- Teaching Tolerance’s mission is to help teachers and schools educate children and youth to be active participants in a diverse democracy. Teaching Tolerance provides free resources to educators—teachers, administrators, counselors and other practitioners—who work with children from kindergarten through high school. Educators use their materials to supplement the curriculum, to inform their practices, and to create civil and inclusive school communities where children are respected, valued and welcome participants.
Resources for Effectively Talking about Race with Stakeholders
- Ready to help change our narrative on race and win critical policy fights? The Center for Social Inclusion has developed the toolkit for you. This toolkit is a collection of the key strategies that they have found are necessary in combating the race wedge and advancing racial equity. Effectively talking about race is an essential skill for advancing racial equity. The Center for Social Inclusion believes that this approach can help a variety of stakeholders to effectively talk about race and policy.
Local Membership-Based Organizations
RAISE (Resilience Alexandria: Inform. Support. Elevate.)
Alexandria’s Trauma Informed Community Network (TICN) is located in Alexandria, Virginia. Established in July 2019, Alexandria’s TICN aims to build a more equitable, safe, trauma-informed and resilient Alexandria by informing, supporting and elevating our community. Hence its name, Resilience Alexandria: Inform. Support. Elevate. (RAISE). If you want to join this community network and help Alexandria become a more trauma informed and resilient place to live, work, and play, then fill out this short registration form to join their mailing list.
SPAN (Suicide Prevention Alliance of Northern Virginia)
SPAN is a regional coalition of the Alexandria, Arlington, Fairfax-Falls Church, Loudoun, and Prince William Community Services Boards (CSBs) and other groups in Northern Virginia, all working together to raise awareness and share resources to prevent suicide. Click hereto sign up for updates and news from SPAN. If you or someone you care about may be at risk of suicide, don't hesitate to reach out for help right away. Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline:1-800-273-TALK (8255) or the Veteran's Crisis Line at 1-800-273-8255 and Press 1.
Actions You Can Do Today:
- Reach out to your faith community
- Join your sorority or fraternity's efforts
- Support safe, peaceful protests, demonstrations, and vigils
- Create safe places for people to grieve, vent or plan for change
- Center the stories and experiences of Black lives and other people of color
- Givetime or funding, in any amount, to organizations that are led by and for people of color, organizing against anti-Black racism, and building infrastructure to advance racial justice
National and Global
For people wanting to support racial justice on the national or even global level, then this end of the Continuum provides some of the organizations
The Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival unites people from across the nation to confront the interlocking evils of systemic racism, poverty, ecological devastation, militarism and the war economy, and the distorted moral narrative of religious nationalism. The Campaign calls for a movement that will shift the moral narrative, impact policies and elections at every level of government, and build lasting power for poor and impacted people. To join the movement in your state, visit their Action webpage.
GARE (Government Alliance for Race and Equity)
The Government Alliance on Race and Equity (GARE) is a national network of government working to achieve racial equity and advance opportunities for all. Across the country, governmental jurisdictions are:
- Making a commitment to achieving racial equity
- Focusing on the power and influence of their own institutions, and
- Working in partnership with others
When this occurs, significant leverage and expansion opportunities emerge, setting the stage for the achievement of racial equity in our communities. For information about membership, contact email@example.com.
People of color are disproportionately affected by COVID-19 and its economic fallout. PolicyLink is working to make sure that medical care, emergency relief, and longer-term recovery efforts target the people and places in greatest need by advancing an intersectional equity policy agenda for federal, state, and local leaders driven by Principles for a Common-Sense, Street- Smart Recovery, and bringing a sharp focus on the racial implications of the crises through a weekly commentary and media analysis project. Find out more. Follow PolicyLink on social platforms, #COVIDandRace
Resources for Foundation and Organizational Leaders
- The goal of the Philanthropic Initiative for Racial Equity (PRE) is to increase the amount and effectiveness of resources aimed at combating institutional and structural racism in communities through capacity building, education, and convening of grantmakers and grantseekers. PRE has published Grantmaking with a Racial Justice Lens: A Practical Guide, to help foundation leaders understand what it means to move from racial equity to racial justice funding strategies. It also addresses how to align operational practices to both reduce racial inequity and advance racial justice, with a chapter on selecting the right tools and consultants.
- One way to join the racial justice movement is by signing up to
receive updates from DC’s Equity
in the Center. Their webpage includes resources and services such as convenings,
working sessions, coaching, and trainings designed to shift mindsets, practices
and systems in the social sector to increase race equity and build a Race
Equity Culture. You’ll also find this recording of a panel discussion on
Organizational Responses to COVID-19. “With the emergency of COVID-19, the most
vulnerable members of society are more under-resourced and at risk of death
than average. At the same time, many organizations just beginning equity work
are questioning if it can/should continue, either because they no longer have
revenue to pay for it, or because they “don’t have the bandwidth.” Using the
framework Nicola Chin shared in a recent Woke@Work guest blog, panelists will
discuss examples of how organizations are both centering race equity in
immediate responses to COVID-19 and thinking strategically for the longer-term.”
- Race Forward catalyzes movement building for racial justice. In partnership with communities, organizations, and sectors, Race Forward builds strategies to advance racial justice in our policies, institutions, and culture.
Actions You Can Do TODAY:
- Follow media outlets and sources that are authored by and for Black, Brown, and Indigenous communities to deepen our antiracism work