Theatre for Positive Mental Health
Rehearsing and reconstructing a positive self-identity through storytelling for African, Caribbean and Black Communities in the Peel Region
This project aims to develop a Participatory Community Theatre Program for African, Caribbean, and Black individuals living or working in the Peel Region in Ontario. This program intends to improve mental health outcomes through story-telling and participatory theatre, an evidence-based tool. Collaborative efforts with Peer Advisory Group members will inform improved practice for mental health service providers. Case-based learning tools with a focus on social determinants of health will be developed for the target audiences.
Lead organization: Moyo Health and Community Services
African, Caribbean and Black adults living in the Peel Region.
- Through raising awareness of emotional and psychological wellbeing, Theatre for Positive Mental Health aims to give participants the opportunity to critically reflect on how the social determinants of mental health affect their wellbeing.
Through improvised theatre exercises, participants will develop stories and narratives that address the unique determinants of health impacting black populations. Participatory theatre is an evidence-based tool, rooted in community participation, that aims to improve mental health outcomes.
- Peel Region, ON
- There is silence surrounding mental health, illness and associated stigma in Black communities.
- This silence prevents people in these communities from seeking help.
- An arts-based tool has potential to showcase different angles and perspectives
In the words of the project team members
“The major difference that we hope to make with this program is to break down the silences around black mental health and the stigmas that are associated with that. We know that the more we hide, and the more that we isolate, especially in Black communities where often the answer to mental health is to kind of deal with it by yourself, we want to open that conversation and bring it out so that everybody is able to see.”
Key protective factors
- Social and emotional skills
- Cultural connectedness
- Identity and belonging
- Supportive relationships in the community
- Safe and secure environments
- Arts-based methods