Special Projects Fund

Project Title

Hope Against Hate: Mental Health Safety & Support for Victims of Anti-Asian Violence

Grant Amount

$150,000

Priority Area

Special Projects Fund

Date Awarded

June 14, 2021

Region

NYC

Status

In Progress

Website

https://www.aafederation.org/

In the past year, the political climate, as well as xenophobic rhetoric tied to the COVID-19 pandemic, has led to an increase in incidents of bias and violence targeted at the Asian community.

Asian Americans represent 16% of New York City’s population. In March 2021, the Center for the Study of Hate & Extremism noted an 883% increase in hate crimes against Asians in New York City since 2019. Victims of these racially motivated incidents or crimes may experience fear and shock, followed by anger, anxiety, depression, social isolation, and helplessness. Members of targeted groups may also experience mental health burdens even if they have not been personally attacked. Those who want to seek help may lack access to linguistically and culturally appropriate mental health services. In 2021, NYHealth awarded Asian American Federation (AAF) a grant to support its Hope Against Hate Campaign, which improves access to high-quality mental health services and support recovery for members of the Asian community in New York City.

Under this grant, AAF will provide mental health support to Asian families through in-language workshops designed to increase parents’ knowledge of the impact of racism and violence on children’s mental health. It will train parents and educators on strategies to support children’s mental health. AAF will also set up in-language victim support services, connecting individuals to culturally competent mental health providers. It will partner with safety experts to provide upstander, verbal de-escalation, and physical self-defense trainings in multiple languages. AAF will also partner with other organizations to advocate for increased State, City, and private investment in culturally competent mental health services for communities of color, which have experienced a disproportionate impact from COVID-19.