The Hogg Foundation for Mental Health is pleased to announce that it has awarded $42,500 for the Central Texas African American Healthy Minds grantsTen organizations have been chosen for this special opportunity. The goal is to support mental health and wellness among African Americans in the Central Texas area.  

The Healthy Minds project was launched in conjunction with the 20th anniversary of the Central Texas African American Family Support Conference (CTAAFSC), which took place in Austin on February 11-12, 2020. CTAAFSC is an annual convening that explores health solutions, fosters relationships and works to reduce stigma and increase access to care for the African American community. This year’s conference took place on February 3-5, 2021.   

“Our decades of involvement with the Black community in our own backyard has helped shape our identity as a statewide funder,” said Dr. Octavio N. Martinez, Jr., executive director of the Hogg Foundation. “The Healthy Minds grants only underscore just how true that is.”  

The 2021 Healthy Minds grantees are:

  • Calaboose African American History Museum. To create a comprehensive virtual curriculum for community members that includes pre-recorded mental wellness sessions and experiential learning lessons to support local African American history and geography education 
  • Community Options, Inc. To provide supportive group therapy sessions to Direct Service Providers who experience second hand-trauma and job-related stress during the COVID-19 pandemic.  
  • Epic Community Development Center. To enhance the lives and mental health of 75 African American adults by giving them the tools to overcome the trauma of COVID-19. 
  • Hearts2Heal. To launch a peer support program to support the Black community experiencing grief and loss due to COVID and racial injustices. Safe spaces are facilitated by those with lived experiences with the goal of decreasing the stigma around seeking out support. 
  • KAZI. To support the “Community Conversations: May We Be Well” series focusing on African Americans coping and healing, during and beyond the COVID-19 pandemic. The project is a collaborative effort spearheaded by KAZI news, health, public affairs, youthmusic show hosts and producers. 
  • Measure Austin. To support the Girl Squad in its effort to provide multifaceted relief, assistance and support immediately to help alleviate some of the impacts of COVID-19 on the Black population in central Texas, while also empowering Black girls.  
  • Saffron Trust Women’s Foundation. To launch a webcast series to inform residents of Austin’s Eastern Crescent, especially low-income Black mothers, of free or low-cost mental health resources and local services, and explain why they should take fullest advantage of these during the ongoing pandemic.  
  • Seton Shoal Creek. To provide Mental Health First Aid trainer certification to 120 African American Central Texas pastoral and lay leaders within the next year. Training would empower the Black community to destigmatize, normalize and increase access to mental health in Williamson, Hays and Travis Counties. 
  • Texas State University. To support an effort to introduce different mental health practices—group therapy, yoga, music therapy and art therapy—through a Teachin educational program where experts describe the value of the mental health practices along with encouragement to students to continue the practices long term. 
  • The Man in Me. To provide tangible support, education and engagement to African American fathers to counter the effects of issues that may make them less likely to be present or engaged in their children‘s lives, thereby strengthening families. 

The foundation is excited to support organizations committed to being a resource to African Americans in Central Texas, especially during such a critical time,” said Vicky Coffee, director of programs for the Hogg Foundation.