The Center for Dignity, Recovery and Empowerment

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The mission of the Center for Dignity, Recovery and Empowerment is to advance effective mental health supports grounded in hope and human dignity through development and dissemination of culturally relevant best practices for recovery and the reduction of prejudice associated with mental health conditions.

Click on any topic below to learn more about the Center’s work.

Emerging Leaders Fellowship Program

The Center helps 23 International Fellows gain mentorship and professional development by providing each one with a recognized mental health leader.

Highlights of fellows’ accomplishments during the year include:

Stigma Reduction Campaigns and Programs

  • Mental health stigma campaign for Asian American communities including several events organized by the Asian Coalition: “Breaking the Silence on Asian American Mental Health” “Understanding Your Child: Finding Resources to Help Your Child” and other speaking engagements to highlight mental health issues in this community;
  • Increasing mental health awareness and eliminating stigma with Muslim youth (age16+) at the San Francisco Islamic School. The goal of the project was to bring awareness of mental health resources available and provide self-care techniques to Muslim youth in times of stress;
  • Development of Project StoryTaler – stigma reduction and well-being promotion through story-telling for students in Hong Kong. A team consisting of nine members with lived experience, five psychology students, and three clinical psychologists engaged with students and other community members through telling their stories. Through the Facebook page attracted close to 3,000 likes and reached 60,000 people with posts that promote mental health and reduce stigma;
  • Strengthening the efficacy and scalability of Working Minds ™ by narrowing recruitment and outreach strategy on workplaces impacted by suicide loss or attempts.

Policy and Advocacy

  • Advance of Mental Health Stigma Reduction Education and Policy Efforts in Fiji including: improvement of national mental health and suicide prevention policies/decree to strengthening current service provision and including marginalized communities in services and programs fostering hope and community; training via traditional “talanoa” (dialogue) sessions, workshops and informal circle processes for leaders from the different communities; developing mental health sections in national training manuals to be delivered to every youth group and community across the country;
  • Raising awareness of mental illness among young African and Caribbean men by working on the 300 Voices project in the UK. The project was Janey Antoniou Award recipient- recognized for exceptional work to assess the scale of the impact of poor mental health on the lives of people living in the region.

Research and Evaluation

  • Experimental Research Study experimental research study to test the efficacy of anti-stigma program developed by National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) set to be implemented in local New York City high schools;
  • Mix-method evaluation study of Rosalyn Carter Fellowships for mental health journalism. The study assessed the effectiveness of the Journalism fellowship program in providing accurate reporting about mental health illness and producing high-quality work that reflects an understanding of mental health issues through exposure to well-established resources in the field;
  • Implementation and Evaluation of “Talk About Change” – an educational intervention for 9th grade students at Holmes Jr. High School in Davis, CA aimed at improving mental health literacy and reducing stigma and discrimination towards those with mental health problems

Meet our Fellows.

Culturally Relevant Research to Practice

The Center helps 30 mental health service providers become trained in culturally relevant strategies.

Learn more African American, Lao, Latino, and Native American community mental health needs by reading about our research.

Resource Development

The Resource Development Program promotes quality implementation and integration of best practice strategies as identified by the most up-to-date research. It works to advance knowledge of effective stigma and discrimination reduction (SDR) to support a movement towards evidence-based practice.

Promising Practices

The Promising Practices Program highlights activities and programs within culturally/ethnically/racially diverse communities that inherently support the reduction of stigma and discrimination surrounding mental health challenges even though that may not be an identified core element of the program. Promising Practices engages programs by entering into a co-learning process from a perspective of cultural humility, while exploring the interplay between culture and concepts of mental health and stigma.

Similar to the Resource Development Program, the Promising Practices Program identifies and promotes practices that may result, through additional research and evaluation, in identification as Best Practices.

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