Executive Director’s Note
This June marks 49 years since the historic uprising of members of the LGBTQ community at the Stonewall Inn in New York City against police raids. The courage of these activists lives on today as we celebrate LGBTQ Pride Month. At the Steve Fund, we are thrilled to support this legacy.
As you may know, LGBTQ youth are far more likely to struggle with mental health issues and deal with abuse, discrimination, and bullying. When it comes to LGBTQ students of color, anxiety, depression, and suicidal thoughts are even more marked – as young people confront multiple types of discrimination. As part of our mission at the Steve Fund, we work with multicultural LGBTQ mental health experts to deliver workshops and webinars on mental health and self care for LGBTQ students of color.
I encourage all of you to take some time not just to celebrate this important movement, but also to spread the word about the resources out there to help LGBTQ young people in need of support.
Join Us this July in the #MyStoryMyWay Campaign
You may remember our April Minority Health Month Peer to Peer Self Care Tips campaign, in partnership with Mental Health America and Active Minds. Through your participation, we were able to reach hundreds of thousands of people millions of times with messages of support, hope, and healing. This July, we are teaming up with Mental Health America, Active Minds, and other partners through the My Story My Way Campaign.
How does your community talk about mental health or mental illness? The results of Mental Health America’s survey on that question during Minority Mental Health Month 2017 were clear: many of us simply do not speak openly about mental health issues.
At the Steve Fund, we are committed to reversing this trend because we know that the more transparency there is around mental health, the less isolated individuals will feel when they struggle with mental health issues.This year, we have decided to give a stage to the voices and experiences of individuals from across diverse communities through our #MyStoryMyWay campaign. We invite you to participate in this campaign by sharing your own story and tagging it with #MyStoryMyWay.
- Here are two example stories about bad nerves and family pressure
- Check out this video introducing the campaign from the Steve Fund’s Senior Scientific Advisor, Dr. Alfiee Breland-Noble.
Support for Students
TEXT STEVE TO 741741: Going through a difficult time? You’re not alone. The Steve Fund has created a special keyword, STEVE, that young people of color can text to 741741 to connect with a trained crisis counselor 24/7. Whatever you’re going through, trained crisis counselors are ready and waiting to chat with you whenever you want, confidentially, for free. Learn more here.
Join Our Youth Advisory Board!
Now Recruiting for the 2018-2019 School Year: Passionate about mental health? Looking to do programming and advocacy on your campus? Want to gather with peers to promote the importance of mental health and emotional well-being? Consider applying for the Steve Fund’s 2018-2019 Youth Advisory Board. Our YAB members provide a critical voice on all Steve Fund efforts; maximize the Fund’s impact among young people of color, and create innovative strategies to connect peers to mental health resources.
- Apply online by July 31st.
- Applicants will be interviewed on a rolling basis.
- Please send any questions to YAB@stevefund.org.
Save the Date: Young, Gifted & @Risk 2018
Our fifth annual Young, Gifted, & @Risk Symposium will take place onWednesday, November 14th, 2018 at the University of Texas at Austin. Registration opens in August. Sign up for YGAR 2018 updates at stevefund.org/ygar and email any questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Partner Spotlight: San Diego City College
Partnering for Professional Development and Student Resiliency: This year we are partnering with San Diego City College to strengthen their support systems for students of color. We are working with their staff on issues of privilege and training them to serve as social justice allies to students of color. With SDCC students, we are offering resiliency workshops through discussions on LGBTQ emotional health to self care for the transition to life beyond college. If you are interested in hosting a workshop at your institution, email Brian Ackerman, Partnerships Manager, at email@example.com. Photo: Leslie Easton, Director of Mental Health at SDCC with Steve Fund expert, Dr. Jeanne Manese.
Steve Fund In the News
For Colored Folks Who Have Considered Suicide, Diverse Issues in Higher Education. Author Dr. Kalilah Brown-Dean, a political scientist at Quinnipiac University, responds to recent high-profile suicides and refers readers to the Steve Fund. From the article:
“What once seemed like a taboo topic that only happened to “other people” is an increasingly frequent challenge for many communities of color. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, suicide is the second leading cause of death for young people between the ages of 10 and 24. A new report released by the Journal of the American Medical Associationshows that Black children are twice as likely to take their lives as Whiteyouth.
Whether more people are taking their lives or if it is becoming more socially acceptable to be open about mental health challenges is debatable. What is clear, however, is that the failure to address the stigma associated with mental illness is often compounded by racial and class-based barriers to treatment.”