Hate crimes against Asian people rising by 300% in the UK, the resurgence of the Black Lives Matter movement, a government currently gaslighting marginalised ethnicities by saying the UK most definitely don’t have a racism issue, all while surviving in a global pandemic, (and those are just our shared traumas). All of the above would be enough to make you want to scream into the void. So, if you haven’t got therapy yet – you probably should.
Looking after our minds is an act of resilience, and care because we all deserve to be heard, and sometimes we don’t have the right tools to look after our noggins on our own. As our Queeries columnist Aisha Mirza says: “there is simply no substitute for the experience of paying a trained person who does not know you outside of your therapeutic dynamic, to non-judgmentally hear you, hold you and help you grow.”
Honestly, there are a million and one reasons to get therapy, but of course, there’s also what feels like, a million and one barriers to accessing it. Finding a therapist that suits you and your needs while understanding your lived experiences and identities, isn’t always that simple. So here are some initiatives and online resources offering therapy free, low-cost and full-price therapy and help.
Asian Mental Health Collective
AMHC is a non-profit organisation based in the US aiming to make mental health services more accessible to the Asian diaspora. They have a database of therapists (although US specific) and a whole host of online resources including questionnaires, help hotlines and a free mindfulness and meditation workshop.
The Black, African and Asian Therapy Network
This is probably the most extensive database of POC therapists in the UK catering specifically to people of colour. You can filter down your preferences to find the right therapist for you whether that’s based on gender, sexuality or area. Some offer sliding scale payment too.
Black Minds Matter
Founded by Agnes Mwakatuma, Black Minds Matter offers free mental health resources and therapy for Black trauma. Although their waiting list is currently closed, you can sign up for their newsletter to be notified as soon as it opens again
Black River Counselling
Black River Counselling is a free online service from Mind, supporting people of Black African and African-Caribbean heritage. Currently, the service is full, but you can sign up for the waiting list.
Brown Therapist Network
Brown Therapist Network is a learning hub for south Asian therapists who also offer therapeutic services from a range of accredited professionals.
Burnt Roti WOC therapists list
Burnt Roti is the UK’S leading South Asian magazine founded by Sharan Dhaliwal. Online they offer a directory of women South Asian and East Asian therapists in London. The list is regularly updated and their website also offers articles on mental health too.
Nafsiyat is an intercultural therapy centre offering accessible psychotherapy and counselling to people from diverse religious, cultural and ethnic communities in London in over 20 different languages. Therapy is provided either through referral or privately through the Nafsiyat Choice service.
Our Naked Truths
Founded and run by Jocelyn Yeboah-Newton, Our Naked Truths is a life art therapy series. Since last year, they have been fundraising for free therapy, low-cost therapy and wellness programmes specifically for Black womxn. So far, they have recruited 20 Black therapists. You can register through the referral form. Check Our Naked Truths socials to stay up to date as well as their list of other low-cost area-specific therapeutic options.
Radical Therapist Network QTBPOC Therapy Fund
Founded in 2020, Radical Therapist Network of therapists working towards intersectional anti-racist practice. Money raised from QTBPOC Therapy Fund will help pay for a year’s worth of weekly therapy for adults who identify as queer/trans/intersex people of colour. They will be offering trauma-informed, trans-cultural therapy with a focus on anti-racist, anti-capitalist and pro-trans therapeutic practices.
South Asian Therapists
South Asian Therapists was founded by Raj Kaur, who also founded Pink Ladoo Project, a campaign changing social norms around girl’s births. After receiving so many messages through the Pink Laddoo project, Raj decided to put together a directory of South Asian therapists. The website also gives helpful advice on self-care and the different types of therapy you can access.
We will continue to update this article