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Find information on some of the experiences that may impact the mental health of people from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) communities. This page also covers BAME mental health organisations, information on faith and on Mind programmes.
There are a number of factors which can affect the mental health of people from BAME communities. For example:
These factors can impact your mental health, and your experience of trying to access mental health support.
Below we cover some possible influences in more detail.
One example of the way in which racism can have an impact on mental health is through micro-aggressions.
The term is used to describe a subtle but offensive comment or action directed at a minority group. The comment or action is often unintentional or unconsciously reinforces a stereotype. For example, you might experience a micro-aggression such as someone saying "you don’t sound Black".
Other examples of micro-aggressions include:
The commonplace, subtle nature of micro-aggressions can have a significant negative impact on the health of people of colour who experience them.
"Most of all, what helps is realising there is far more to life than grades, university, the people you meet at university, more than broken friendships or broken families, more than Brexit or racism or misogyny, or those people you can't bear to live with (who will be temporary)."
While being a movement for change, it's important to address how the Black Lives Matter movement can impact Black and Mixed Heritage people. Hearing about racism, and viewing racist behaviour, may affect your mental health in different ways.
For example, for some people the movement might have:
If you're feeling affected by the movement, please remember that it is important to speak to someone. See our page about getting mental health support for students.
You may also want to look into whether there are specific networks, clubs or societies for BAME students at your place of study. It might help to meet and talk to others about similar experiences.
If you are experiencing a mental health problem, you should get support and be treated with respect. For many people from BAME communities, this is unfortunately not always the case. For example, one issue is BAME people experiencing poorer outcomes from mental health treatment.
Find out about our policy work on race, ethnicity and mental health.
The Mental Health Foundation has more information about influences on the mental health of people from BAME communities.
The National Union of Students (NUS) Black students' network represents students of African, Asian, Arab and Caribbean heritage. The network supports issues affecting Black students on a local, national and international level.
Find out more information about the NUS Black students' network.
Student Space offers specialist support and services for Black students and Punjabi students during the pandemic.
Mind blogger Megan Simpson is a registered nurse and mental health advocate.
Taraki is a non-profit working with Punjab communities to create spaces where everyone can access:
Takari also run university projects where you can take part in workshops, or get involved by working with them.
Visit the Takari website to find out more.