Our Blog & Outreach

Latest Instagram Posts

Let's Get Real on this final day of the business week in #BebeMooreCampbell #BIPOCMentalHealthAwareneessMonth⠀

For years, BIPOC individuals have been 'othered' through stereotypes.:⠀

🛑 Black men fearful of wearing hoodies or clothes they feel comfortable in during the Covid-19 pandemic. ⠀
🛑 Asian girls and women tire of the "cold woman" misconception. ⠀
🛑 Indigenous young people's culture and traditions being appropriated for "fashion". ⠀

And on and on...⠀

Living in a world that misunderstands you is hard. It drains your energy and your mind. We're here for you. If you need help, just reach out. Follow us here for more discussions about #BIPOCYouthMentalHealth and remember:⠀

BIAPOC (Adding that "A" for Asians and Arab/MENA) young people are: ⠀

#bold; don’t stop living your life because you are fighting for the lives of others.⠀
#deep; you are more than what you seem, you are #multifaceted, you are #brilliant, and your voice matters. ⠀
#diverse; our skin transcends multitudes, reflects deep and richly diverse hues and our #passions are equally diverse. We are students, professionals, athletes, poets, activists and so much more. ⠀
In the midst of all of this, it is vital for you to address your mental health, because this is what AAKOMA is all about since we believe deeply that #yourmentalhealthmatters.⠀

Tell us how you are working toward social change AND prioritizing your mental health in these times. We support you!!!
...

11 0

This is how we feel every time we see you BIPOC teens out there advocating for your mental health. The world may not always give you the support you need, but there will ALWAYS be people out there willing to uplift you and support you. Count us in that group ok? ⠀

While we're also super sad to see July #BebeMooreCampbell #mentalhealthawarenessmonth go 😢 we will STILL be here listening, advocating and acting for you in the days, weeks and months ahead. ⠀

Count on us, we're here for you fam!! 💪🏾
...

66 4

These are our VALUES:⠀

1️⃣#RaiseConciousness by hosting Live + Virtual Events like our Black History Month Paint and Sip with @lexiunderwood ⠀
2️⃣#EmpowerPeople by hosting virtual #MeditationWednesdays last summer⠀
3️⃣#ShiftSystems by participating on national boards and partnering with mental health organizations to teach orgs the skills needed to effectively work with youth of color in culturally relevant ways. ⠀

You can help us by joining our efforts, by donating or by even sharing our social media posts to help others learn more about us. #BIPOC teens, we see you, we hear you and we value you. 💜 ❤️ 💛 💜 ❤️ 💛 ⠀

Tell us one of your guiding values below!!
...

12 1

Join us tonight! 6:30 PM @youtube live as 2 of our amazing #CommunityScholars Kathy Williams and @butterfly_torian and Kathy Springfield-Cobb lead the @naminorthernva monthly meeting of advocates and families in a discussion of our #research on engaging Black Families in mental health treatment. This is from research co-led by @dralfiee and the 2 Kathys while Dr. Alfiee was a professor of psychiatry at Duke Medicine.⠀

Today, our #AAKOMAFLOA program is emerging with generous funding from the UpSwing Fund for Adolescent mental health and this event is the seone one where we are providing training t community members in how to utilize our efficacious, culturally relevant approach to helping BIPOC families overcome psychosocial barriers to mental health care. Join us!!!⠀

Watch live on YouTube LIVE 👉🏿 (COPY and PASTE link in your browser): https://bit.ly/2WlSC95
...

14 2

This says it all doesn’t it? #LissennAct #JoinAAKOMA ...

34 3

#GenZ❗️ Tell us 🗣️ the best way you think adults should engage a teen when they are feeling bad. We've heard a few different things from our AAKOMA teen advisors, like you see in our graphic. Maybe you express yourself on socials or text with someone you trust, and we know you have many ideas of your own. Drop a line 📲 in the comments to help us educate parents, guardians, aunties, ates and uncles of the world #BIPOCMentalHealthAwarenessMonth #Teens #MentalHealth #LissenNact #JoinAAKOMA ...

6 3

We really love our partners and collaborators who center and/or amplify BIPOC youth mental health. You should go follow all these folks as we celebrate them this week for BebeMooreCampbell #BIPOC Mental Health Awareness Month.⠀
#lissenNact #JoinAAKOMA
...

11 3

AAKOMA Engages our Community! On a national scale, AAKOMA specializes in coordinating with Subject Matter experts on a variety of topics including:⠀
💜 Youth Engagement⠀
💛 Youth Empowerment⠀
❤️ BIPOC Youth Research in Mental Health⠀
🖤 Treatment Engagement in BIPOC Communities⠀
💚 Mental Health Stigma Reduction in BIPOC community⠀
and on WED. July 21, 2021 at 7:00 PM est, we have the honor of supporting Mr. Brandon Johnson as he collaborates with Dr. La Shawn M. Paul and colleagues for a presentation to the @naminys in recognition of #BebeMooreCampbell BIPOC Mental Health Awareness Month.⠀

Register today so that you can join Brandon and the panel to learn more about his work, AAKOMA's work and our efforts to curb suicide and reduce mental illness stigma in Black youth, families and communities.
...

27 3

Our intern @morgannnoble even outchea workin’ on her birfday!!
#dedication
HAPPY BIRTHDAY MORGANN!!! We ❤️ U!!
...

29 5

Are you better at Listening or Acting? Here at AAKOMA, our theme all this month of BIPOC Mental Health Awareness is #LissenNAct. For us, this means we center the voices of young people (teens and young adults) and we work to ensure that we act on what we learn. ⠀

In other words, like our founder alwasy says, there is the fast way (act without listening) , the slow way (listneing without acting) and the best way (doing BOTH). Keep it tuned to our IG channel to learn how we are doing this everyday and please email us so you can join our community and use your gifts or listening and/or acting to uplift BIPOC Youth Mental Health. ⠀

Psst, we had a HUGE announcement this week, did you hear?! We just received an announcement of an investment from Starbucks Neighborhood Grants and we could not be more excited!! Stay Tuned for all of the cool work we will accomplish with generous support from our friends at Starbucks!!
...

8 2

Today we shout out our partners at @MentalHealthAmerica. Very early when we first transitioned to a full-fledged 501c3, their team lead for Partnerships and Outreach connected with us about partnering and we love Miss America P. for it to this day. They have SO MUCH going on at all times, and it is all in the name of uplifting your mental health. You must go check them out! They have been so great to us and we value their partnership deeply. Go check them out on their amazing IG page, their website and their podcast called, "In The Open." ...

18 3

We are so excited to announce generous support from our friends at the @Starbucks Foundation!! You all know that AAKOMA works to build the consciousness of Youth of Color and their caregivers to recognize and place importance on mental health, to empower youth and their families to seek help and manage mental health, and to influence systems and services to receive and address the needs of youth of color and their families. This award will support the relaunch of Team AAKOMA, a board of teen advisors and influencers passionate about BIPOC youth mental health (stay tuned for our big announcement on that in the coming weeks).⠀
“We are honored to be a recipient of the Neighborhood Grant and deeply value the faith The Starbucks Foundation has placed in us and the work we do to achieve optimal mental health for all,” said AAKOMA Project Founder @DrAlfiee Breland-Noble. “We cannot thank our local Starbucks partners enough for nominating us and sharing AAKOMA’s vision of a world where every child, teen and young adult feels the freedom to live unapologetically and authentically.”
...

48 8

Raise Consciousness: AAKOMA Partnerships Collabs. It was a joy to collaborate with @ggrfoundation for their event planned and organized by Black #teen girls with support from mentors and the adults in their lives. This IGTV is just a quick point made by one of our Subject Matter Experts @drshanitabrown were so honored to be able to support Dr. Brown in representing us for this amazing event. AT AAKOMA, this is one of our core pillars and the kind of work that uplifts #BIPOCMentalHEALTHAwareness ...

6 3

Tomorrow at 5:00 PM est!! Join our founder @Dralfiee and the Founders of the amazing emotional well-being and development plush toys @slumberkins ! Yes, in honor of BebeMooreCampbell MentalHealthAwarenessMonth, we are joining forces to uplift a much needed conversation about the important of emotional well-being for ALL youth with a focus on + #BIPOC + #underserved little ones, tweens and teens.⠀

Join Us.
...

14 5

Time for some fun! We asked our team their favorite songs 🎼 to uplift them when they feel a little anxious and worried. The graphic shares what they told us. Now you tell us, what is YOUR goto song when you need some support 💪🏾 and uplift🙌🏾? Drop a note in our comments and tag your friend to tell them to drop their song too! ...

19 3

Join @dralfiee LIVE today with @ryangmundy @Nfl alumni of the Pittsburg Steelers and founder of @alkemehealth an innovative mental health platform for People of Color at 1:30pm EST over on the Dr. Alfiee IG page.⠀

When it comes to Alkeme Health and why they exist, the caption in our graphic says it all. ⠀

Do you want Dr. Alfiee and Ryan to discuss anything specific about BIPOC mental health or being a Black founder on this chat? Let us know in the comments below!
...

16 2

One of the best things about social media is how it brings people together and helps us discover new things. Throughout #BebeMooreCampbell BIPOC mental health awareness month, we are using our social platform and our voices to support our fellow travelers working so hard in the space of serving the underserved.💪🏽 ⠀

So today, we recognize @alkemehealth an innovative mental health company "that creates digital self-care and wellbeing products designed for the culture." They are on the web building and "Empowering a mindful generation to build bridges, find freedom and transform feeling into healing - Alkeme makes mental health approachable,⠀
accessible, and aspirational."⠀

On Friday we have a treat for you all! The Founder of Alkeme Health Mr. @RyanGMundy is going live with our own Founder @dralfiee Breland-Noble on her IG page! Stay tuned to our IG Story and Dr. Alfiee's page to get the time. We hope you'll join us to learn more about this incredible human and his mission to improve the mental health of Black people, People of Color and everyone. Join Us!!
...

16 5

What makes us unique at AAKOMA? Well, in honor of #BEBEMOORECAMPBELL #BIPOCMentalHealthAwarenessMonth, all month we are sharing our research findings with you in a way that is accessible and actionable, so read on! ⠀

This data and graphic are from one of our earlier studies where we learned what actions make it easier for Black families to accept mental health treatment when they have a teen with #depression. In this study, our goal to see how well our unique and culturally grounded intervention was at increasing the likelihood of Black teens' attendance at the first depression treatment session. 16 teens were separated into 2 groups. Either those who received our version of a pre-treatment activity to help get families over the emotional hurdles to seeking mental health care or treatment as usual (which means they received a referral for an appointment with a provider). ⠀

5 teens out of 8 received our full AAKOMA activity while 3 of the 8 did not. 100% of the youth who participated in our special AAKOMA activity, attended their first session of depression treatment. Eight additional teens did not participate in our AAKOMA activity but received referrals or care. 75% (N=6) of those teens attended their first treatment session and none of them were lost during the active study phase. ⠀

So what does this mean to us at AAKOMA. Well a few things. ⠀
1️⃣We are REALLY good at engaging Black families around mental health issues; ⠀
2️⃣It is critical to understand that mental health treatment begins WELL BEFORE a person ever calls a mental health professional or sits in their chair and ⠀
3️⃣ Black people are very savvy about mental health treatment and understand the importance of cultural competence. ⠀

You can learn more about AAKOMA, our extensive research like what we've described here, and what we do by visiting our website at https://bit.ly/36rAz3f
...

24 4

AAKOMA Blog

Building Resilience: Avoiding Social Media Burnout

Building Resilience: Avoiding Social Media Burnout

As part of @Creators Week, our own Dr. Alfiee moderated a panel consisting of @kendramorous, @dejafoxx, and @teenagertherapy to discuss social media burnout -- why it happens, how to do know when you're experiencing it, and how to deal with it. Instagram’s @Creators...

Interview with Slumberkins Founders

Interview with Slumberkins Founders

Dr. Alfiee appeared with Slumberkins founders, Callie Christensen and Kelly Oriard, to discuss the impetus for creating Slumberkins and how to introduce small children naming their emotions, and how to tackle issues that can be extremely challenging to them such as...

How to Help Kids Prepare to Go Back to School

How to Help Kids Prepare to Go Back to School

Dr. Alfiee was interviewed by Holly Leber Simmons on how to prepare your kids to go back to school now that schools are starting to transition back to in person instruction. Read more

A Conversation on Mental Health

A Conversation on Mental Health

Dr. Alfiee, former NBA superstar Lamar Odom, Project Healthy Minds CEO Phillip Schermer, and MadHappy co-founder Mason Spector combined for "A Conversation on Mental Health." The group discussed a wide array of topics from what they have learned about their own mental...

The Sound it Out Campaign

The Sound it Out Campaign

Our Founder, Dr. Alfiee, was interviewed about the New Sound it Out Campaign by Shelly Irwin of WGVU in Michigan. They discussed both the campaign and middle schooler mental health during the pandemic. Listen

Outreach/Awareness

What We Do

Check out this great video from our Black History Month Event at Industrious showcasing what we do at the AAKOMA Project.

AAKOMA Raise the Region 2020

A brief overview of who we are and what we are about at the AAKOMA Project

Screenshot of AAKOMA Project free virtual therapy

NBC Washington | Virginia Doctor’s Mental Health Initiative Offers Help for African-American Communities

Dr. Alfiee Breland-Noble, founder of the AAKOMA Project, teamed up with the Boris Lawrence Henson Foundation to provide free virtual mental health treatments to help underserved communities in Northern Virginia.

Watch video at NBC Washington

Dr. Alfiee with event participant

Can We Talk? Event

To help establish AAKOMA as a go-to resource for evidence-based mental health outreach and education with Black youth and families we will:

  1. Formally introduce the AAKOMA Project, Inc. to our local community.
  2. Reduce stigma and promote emotional well-being among marginalized youth.
  3. Lay groundwork for long-term capacity building and sustainability.
Black teenager

Ring the Alarm Report

In December 2019, the AAKOMA Project and Dr. Alfiee participated as members of a national working group along with Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman and the Congressional Black Caucus to develop and share a report on the crisis of African-American and Black youth suicide and mental illness.  Our report is located on the Congresswoman’s website here.

Audience at AAKOMA + BHM event

AAKOMA + BHM Event

It’s no secret that AAKOMA loves the kids, but a lesser known fact is that our outreach also involves parents and teens from diverse backgrounds. AAKOMA is excited to continue building relationships with adolescents and their parents/caregivers across cultural backgrounds for mental health.

Students in graduation robes

BSUFIU in DC

On January 29, 2020, The AAKOMA Project, Inc. was asked to present our work to a group of students representing the Black Student Union of Florida International University. We shared our learning of the past 20 years and our vision for the future. (FIU).

Register here for Virtual Therapy (for young people)

If you are in crisis and need immediate support or intervention, call the mental/behavioral health crisis line of your county behavioral health officeTrained crisis workers are generally available 24-hours a day, 7 days a week.  If the situation is potentially life threatening, please go directly to your nearest hospital emergency room.

If you are a teen or young adult in need of mental health support, register here for up to 5 FREE virtual sessions.

    If you live in Virginia, what county & city do you live in?