Programs & Services
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Mental Health/Mental Illness
4th Annual Conference on Haitian Mental Health
The Annual Conference on Haitian Mental Health brings together practitioners, researchers, educators, public health officials, faith-based and spiritual leaders, community advocates, and policymakers whose current work can inform the development of a comprehensive, community-based, and culturally-oriented mental health agenda for Haitians in the Diaspora. The primary aim of the Annual Conference is to provide an intellectually stimulating forum where attendees can engage in a meaningful discourse on the mental health needs of the Haitian community; learn from leading scholars in the field; network with other professionals with a strong interest in, passion for, and commitment to promoting the health and well-being of Haitian immigrants; and exchange knowledge, information, and data on culturally-oriented theoretical inquiries, clinical practices, treatment interventions, research, and policy-based initiatives. In addition to offering cutting-edge plenary sessions, panel presentations, and networking opportunities, the Conference is intended to commemorate Haitian Heritage Month through a series of cultural events and an annual art exhibition that celebrate the rich history, values, and traditions of Haitian culture.
Haiti Service Learning & Summer Immersion Program
The Haiti Service Learning and Summer Immersion Program is a graduate-level course offered through the Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology (MSPP), 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.
In July 2014, a group of 10 students and four psychologists traveled to the Arcahaie region of Haiti where they volunteered and worked with youth at Hope on a String and Lycee Jean-Baptiste Pointe du Sable. The group also conducted training on the impact of trauma on child and adolescent development at Child Flower Haiti and Centre de Formation Technique et Professionnelle.