Healing Racial Stress Workbook for Black Teens
Skills to Help You Manage Emotions, Resist Racism & Feel Empowered
Powerful skills to help you heal from racial stress and trauma, resist racism in your day-to-day life, and thrive.
If you’ve experienced or witnessed racism or discrimination, you may feel stressed, angry, sad, or anxious. You may have trouble focusing on school or enjoying time with friends. And you may even have moments when your heart races and you fear something bad will happen. You should know that you are not alone, and what happened to you isn’t your fault. Most importantly, there are tools you can use to work through these difficult emotions, regain your confidence, and move forward from your experience. This workbook can help guide you, step by step.
Written by a team of clinical and community psychologists and experts in Black mental health and wellness including Dr. Jessica S. Henry, Dr. Farzana T. Saleem, Dr. Dana L. Cunningham, Dr. Nicole L. Cammack, and Dr. Danielle R. Busby, this workbook is informed by evidence-based strategies to help you manage emotions in the face of race-based stress due to microaggressions, implicit bias, overt racism, and vicarious racism. You’ll also learn to find strength in your racial and cultural identity, and gain the skills needed to resist racism and thrive.
You’ll gain tools to help you:
Name and define your experience
Explore how racial stress can impact your thoughts, feelings, and behavior
Create a “game plan” for responding to racism
Apply what you’ve learned out in the world
With this workbook, you’ll see that you are not alone in your experience, and will find stress-relieving strategies you can draw on throughout your lifetime to stay well in body and mind. Finally, you’ll learn tips for navigating discussions about race and experiences of discrimination, so you can be empowered to stand up for what’s right and contribute to an antiracist society.
Meet The Authors
Danielle R. Busby, PhD, is a licensed clinical psychologist in Michigan and Texas. She is cofounder and vice president of professional relations and liaison of Black Mental Wellness Corp., and is an assistant professor in the department of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the University of Texas Medical Branch. Busby’s research examines traumatic and race-related stressors among Black youth, barriers to mental health service use for Black youth and emerging adults who are at elevated risk for suicide, and protective factors that seek to decrease negative psychological outcomes and increase wellness. She has clinical expertise in child trauma and youth suicide prevention and intervention. Busby is passionate about decreasing barriers to mental health service use for underserved populations and is committed to continuously bridging the gap between research and clinical practice. Her ongoing work amplifies and supports marginalized voices through education, clinical training, and healing. Busby was born in Detroit, MI and raised in Southfield, MI. She received her BA in psychology from the University of Michigan, and her master’s and PhD in clinical-community psychology from The George Washington University. For more about Busby, please visit BlackMentalWellness.com or DrDanielleBusby.com
Nicole L. Cammack, PhD, is a licensed clinical psychologist in Maryland and Washington, DC. She is founder, president, and CEO of Black Mental Wellness, Corp., and she also owns Healing Generations Psychological Services and Consultation Center, LLC., a private practice in Washington, DC. Cammack received her bachelor’s degree from Howard University, and her PhD in clinical psychology from The George Washington University. Throughout her career, she has continually focused on mental health issues specific to the Black community, and identifying ways to address the cultural and systemic issues that impact Black mental health and wellness. She currently lives in Washington, DC. For more about Cammack, please visit BlackMentalWellness.com or HealingGenerationsCenter.com.
Dana L. Cunningham, PhD, is a licensed psychologist and cofounder and vice president of community outreach and engagement at Black Mental Wellness, Corp. She is also program director at the National Center for School Mental Health in the department of psychiatry at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. Cunningham is passionate about increasing access to culturally responsive and antiracist mental health care for underserved youth and uplifting the voices of marginalized populations. Cunningham also authored a children’s book, A Day I’ll Never Forget, to support children who have been impacted by the incarceration of a loved one. Additionally, Cunningham owns a private practice in the greater Washington, DC area, where she resides. Cunningham received a BA in psychology from Spelman College and obtained her M.A. and PhD in clinical psychology from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale. To learn more about Cunningham, please visit BlackMentalWellness.com.
Farzana T. Saleem, PhD, received her PhD in clinical-community psychology and is an assistant professor in the Graduate School of Education at Stanford University. Her research examines the influence of racial stressors and culturally relevant practices on adolescents’ psychological health and adjustment, with a focus on understanding the process and contextual nuance of how youth learn about race and respond to racism (often termed, ethnic-racial socialization) across families and schools. She is a codeveloper of the group-based intervention TRANSFORM, designed to heal racial stress and trauma among youth of color. Saleem utilizes research to develop applied tools and interventions that promote the mental health and development of Black adolescents and other youth of color as well as those within their surrounding contexts. She is from Atlanta, Georgia and currently lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. For more information about Saleem, visit farzanasaleem.com, or follow her on social media @drftsaleem on Instagram and @ dr_ftsaleem on Twitter.
Jessica S. Henry, PhD, is a licensed clinical psychologist in Washington, DC, Maryland, and Georgia. She is the cofounder and vice president of program development and evaluation for the Black Mental Wellness Corp., and founder and CEO of Community Impact: Consultation & Psychological Services—a trauma-informed organization whose mission is to provide trauma-informed services to individuals and organizations affected by traumatic events. Henry is the current senior director of behavioral health for one of Washington, DC’s largest Federally Qualified Health Centers, and previous clinical director of a level-5 close security male prison and Georgia’s largest youth homeless shelter. Overall, Henry is passionate about the mental health of individuals in Black and under resourced communities and has specialized in increasing access to treatment and providing the highest quality of evidence-based mental health treatment services to underserved youth, families, and adults exposed to traumatic events (e.g., community violence, abuse, neglect). She received her BS from Howard University, MA from Columbia University, and PhD in clinical psychology from The George Washington University. She is from the greater Washington, DC metropolitan area. For more information about Henry, please visit BlackMentalWellness.com or ImpactTheCommunity.com. She can also be found on Instagram @BlackMentalWellness or @CommunityImpact_CP.
Foreward written by
Howard C. Stevenson, Ph.D.
Dr. Howard Stevenson is the Constance Clayton Professor of Urban Education, Professor of Africana Studies, in the Human Development & Quantitative Methods Division of the Graduate School of Education at the University of Pennsylvania. He is the Executive Director of the Racial Empowerment Collaborative, a research, program development, and training center that brings together community leaders, researchers, authority figures, families, and youth to study and promote racial literacy and health in schools and neighborhoods. From 2015 to 2021, he was co-director of Forward Promise, a national philanthropy office that funds community-based organizations that help families of color heal, grow, and thrive above the trauma of historical and present-day dehumanization.
He received the 2020 Gittler Prize, by Brandeis University, for outstanding and lasting scholarly contributions to racial, ethnic, and/or religious relations. He was listed in the 2021 RHSU Edu-Scholar Public Influence Rankings of the top university-based scholars in the United States who did the most to shape educational practice and policy. In 2021, Dr. Stevenson was elected to membership in the National Academy of Education (NAEd). The NAEd advances high-quality education research and its use in policy and practice and consists of U.S. and international associates who are elected on the basis of outstanding scholarship related to education.