Sacramento, California - California Department of Public Health (CDPH) Director and State Public Health Officer Dr. Karen Smith announced today the intent to award nearly $13 million in grants to help reduce mental health disparities in communities that have traditionally been underserved
The funding will be distributed to 11 pilot projects statewide that provide mental health services to five target populations, including African American, Asian and Pacific Islander, Latino, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer and Questioning (LGBTQ), and Native American communities. The grant monies, which will be distributed over the course of five and a half years, are part of CDPH’s California Reducing Disparities Project (CRDP). This will be the third release of CRDP grant funds. In all, CDPH will award $60 million to 41 contractors and grantees between 2016 and 2022.
“The California Reducing Disparities Project recognizes that many of the promising mental health services in our most diverse communities need additional support in order to improve their effectiveness,” said Dr. Smith. “CDPH is committed to funding organizations that are doing meaningful work in their communities to reduce mental health disparities but are not often considered for large grants.”
Disparities in mental health services are found among all races, ethnicities, sexual orientations, and gender identities and expressions. Even though they make up the majority of the state’s population, communities of color are less likely to receive quality mental health care services than their Caucasian peers. Members of the LGBTQ community frequently report that mental health providers do not know how to address sexual orientation and gender identity concerns, or overemphasize these issues in treatment, even if it is not the reason the person sought care.
The primary goal of the CRDP grants is to invest in new and existing community programs that have shown promise in reducing mental health disparities in these underserved communities. The grants are awarded to small organizations that have annual budgets of less than $500,000 and need organizational support in order to meet the Project’s implementation and evaluation requirements. Each organization receives six months of technical support to develop a scope of work, detailed five-year budget, and an evaluation plan.
The CRDP is funded by the Mental Health Services Act (Proposition 63) that was passed in November 2004. This act imposes a one percent income tax on personal income that exceeds $1 million.
The 11 awardees receiving grants totaling $1,180,000 in funding for more than five and a half years include:
1. California Black Women’s Health Project – Los Angeles County
2. Healthy Heritage Movement – Riverside County
3. Whole Systems Learning – Riverside County
Asian and Pacific Islander *:
1. Hmong Cultural Center of Butte County – Butte County
2. Muslim American Society: Social Services Foundation – Sacramento County
1. Humanidad Therapy and Education Services – Sonoma County
2. Integral Community Solutions Institute – Fresno County
3. Latino Service Providers – Sonoma County
1. Gay & Lesbian Center of Bakersfield – Kern County
2. Gender Health Center – Sacramento County
3. San Joaquin Pride Center – San Joaquin County
CDPH did not receive any applications for the Native American community.