Community-based participatory research with Black people and Black scientists: the power and the promise

Community-based participatory research (CBPR) is a collaborative approach that involves active participation and input from members of the community on all aspects of the research process.

CBPR is an important research method as it can empower communities to work with academicians and other scholars for more robust and culturally appropriate interventions. Although CBPR is useful regardless of race or ethnicity, it is particularly important for Black scientists and communities. This is because CBPR seeks to address social and health inequities by engaging with historically excluded communities, as well as to produce research that is relevant to the community. Successful CBPR initiatives can improve Black mental health through collaboration, empowerment, and cultural sensitivity, as the current under-representation of Black scientists hampers mental health equity efforts. Equal funding of Black scientists is key to conducting community-engaged research. We discuss CBPR and its importance for Black mental health, case studies of CBPR conducted by Black scientists, Black leaders, and community members, and what is necessary for Black people to attain mental health in an inherently racist society.

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