Cultural competence is being recognized as foundational knowledge for healthcare professionals. In 2005, Nova Scotia produced a Cultural Competence Guide for Primary Health Care Professionals. But for many African Nova Scotians this hasn’t translated to direct benefit. Many still struggle silently. With misunderstandings within the community around what mental illness means and barriers that prevent individuals from accessing help, dealing with depression, anxiety and other disorders becomes challenging and complicated. Compounding those issues is the difficulty of finding a therapist of color or an organization that specifically caters to one’s community. From stigma to lack of research, these all play into larger barriers for finding types of therapy or medication that fit African Nova Scotian needs.
Host, Jayde Symone, greats you with soundscape she created to share a deep truth, a look into her brain as she is asleep, what she calls her anxiety dream. She is joined by East Preston born, African Nova Scotian medical researcher and mental health advocate, Adena Cox. She shares her experience observing mental illness in her community, feeling helpless in the short term yet taking action for the future. Her truth; Black representation at all levels of Mental Health service is desperately needed.