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Black youth are suffering from high rates of race-based stress that, left untreated, is developing into racial trauma. Researchers have linked anxiety, depression, isolation, and suicidal behavior to untreated racial trauma in Black youth. BMH (Black Mental Health) Connect seeks to address these issues through play-based interventions that inspire real conversations around race-based issues affecting Black youth today.

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A Note from Our Founder

April Duncan, RPT-S, DSW

I created this program out of my passion to see all Black children live their best lives. Out of frustration that they have to deal with adult issues because of the color of their skin. As a play therapist, I wanted to find a fun & safe place for Black youth to process the feelings they have around navigating racism & discrimination, while also empowering them to use their voices to be the kings and queens they are meant to be!

Why play?

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The founder of BMH Connect, Dr. April Duncan, is a Registered Play Therapist-Supervisor and understands the therapeutic value of play to help connect with children. Black children, in Dr. Duncan's opinion, benefit from games and activities, that are both fun and helpful for them, when learning better ways to manage heavy and uncomfortable feelings. For more information about Play Therapy, please visit the Association for Play Therapy.

Play Therapy helps:

Smiling Kids

Relieve Stress

Play releases endorphins, which help promote overall well-being and assist with feelings of happiness

Strengthen Connections

Having fun with others increases trust, compassion and empathy with others, leading to stronger connections & relationships

Best Friends
Kid's Playing Outdoor

Improve social skills

Play helps children learn boundaries, cooperation and how to have appropriate interactions with peers

Encourage Open communication

Play helps break down the walls of communication & gives a relaxed space for kids to talk about difficult feelings

Grandpa and Grandchild Having Fun