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Mental Health/Mental Illness
5th Annual Conference on Haitian Mental Health
Haitian religious views and spiritual practices are widely misunderstood and often vilified in mainstream forums. Yet, religion and spirituality are deeply rooted in the Haitian psyche, and are influential forces that empower and enrich the lives and personal experiences of Haitian immigrants as well as bring meaning and purpose to their existence. Given the pivotal role of religion and spirituality in the Haitian culture, mental health providers must be cognizant of misconceptions about Haitian spiritual values and traditions, understand the impact of religion and spirituality on help-seeking behaviors among Haitian individuals, and be knowledgeable about spiritually-oriented treatment strategies and interventions that can engage Haitian clients in care and promote their health and well-being.
Haiti Service Learning & Summer Immersion Program
The Haiti Service Learning and Summer Immersion Program is a graduate-level course offered at William James College (formerly Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology), in partnership with the Haitian Mental Health Network. The primary goal of the course is to provide students with increased knowledge, skills, and experience in working with Haitian and Haitian-American individuals and families; and in becoming more skilled as practitioners to serve Haitian communities in the U.S. and Haiti. Students take part in didactic activities to learn about the history of Haiti, cultural belief systems and practices, and their impact on help-seeking behaviors among Haitian immigrants. Additionally, students travel for a week-long service learning and summer immersion experience in Haiti where they gain a deeper appreciation of the language, customs, and cultural practices of Haitian society. While in Haiti, students engage in service learning activities and multidisciplinary collaborations with schools, grassroots organizations, and health care and social services agencies. They also participate in cultural excursions, and visit historical sites and other points of interest in the host community. Learn More