Peace of mind, peace in streets are goals of Affinia Healthcare weekend events
Affinia Healthcare is holding two events this weekend to promote mental health and peace in the community.
The first event is a partnership with Michael Brown Sr.’s Chosen for Change and it is targeting young Black males for a discussion on mental health. The Conversation – Black Men’s Mental Health will be held from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturday, September 23 at Affinia Healthcare, 1717 Biddle St. Lunch will be provided. The conversation will be led by licensed professional counselor Tessie Amos and will be an opportunity for Black men to discuss what is often a taboo subject for them.
“We are working to help our Black men better deal with the challenges and obstacles they face,” said LaDon Meriweather, Director, Health Outreach, with Affinia Healthcare. “For so long we have told ourselves that we can’t feel what we’re experiencing, we have to shake it off or sweep it under the rug, and that’s killing us. This is a first step. We’re having a conversation and hopefully it will lead to other productive ways to handle mental stress and strain.”
The second event is Affinia Healthcare’s second Anti-violence Paint Party, which will be held 3 to 5 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 23 at Annie Malone Children and Family Services, 5355 Page Ave. This event is geared toward youth ages 18-25 but is open to all ages. The painting will be led by Eric Wilson, mentor and owner of the ERG Gallery, and facilitated by Candice Cox of KHOAS Inc. counseling. Ms. Cox is a licensed clinical social worker who specializes in trauma and family dynamics.
“Painting is therapeutic and allows for self-expression,” said Sonia Deal, Vice President for Community Health & Engagement. “Some of the negative behavior we see in our communities is because our young people don’t have a positive outlet for their energy and expression. Art is something everyone can do, and it has healing properties we hope will help our young people find other positive ways to express themselves.”
Affinia Healthcare will provide the painting materials for the paint party as well as light refreshments. There is no charge to attend the paint party or the Conversation for Black Men.
These initiatives help support Affinia Healthcare’s commitment to public health and safety. President & CEO Dr. Kendra Holmes has made mental health a part of the community health center’s strategic priorities.
“Physical and mental health are critical to safe and healthy environments,” Dr. Holmes stated. “It is short-sighted to think a person will have a good quality of life if their mental health is suffering or they don’t feel safe in their own home. We appreciate the partnership of organizations like Annie Malone, KHAOS Inc., ERG Gallery, and Chosen for Change to help provide these kinds of offerings, and will continue to look for innovative ways to reach those who need help and healing.”
Registration is required for the paint party and the men’s mental health meeting.
To register for the paint party, click here: https://forms.office.com/r/9waCdSGQAw
For more information on the Black men’s mental health conversation, call Mr. Meriweather at 314-814-8737.