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Vendor in 9th Street in Philadelphia. Photo: AL DÍA Archives
Vendor in 9th Street in Philadelphia. Photo: AL DÍA Archives

Vive Philly: Highlighting mental health while celebrating South Philadelphia’s Latinx communities

The festival on Saturday, Oct. 12 in South Philly will celebrate culture and educate attendees about a seldom talked-about issue in their community.

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Mental health and well-being are topics often swept under the rug in the everyday dialogue of the Latinx community. But on Saturday, Oct. 12 from 12 to 6pm at Maronite Hall (1013 Ellsworth Street, South Philly), both will be front and center at Vive Philly.

The neighborhood fair, sponsored by Philatinos Radio, Dos Puntos, Resolve Philly and the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce will celebrate the culture of South Philly’s diverse, Mexican and Central American communities, and educate community members about some of the mental health resources available for them.

In addition to live traditional music and dance performances taking place throughout the day and other activities catered to children, many of the city’s mental health resource centers will have tables to advertise their services.

There are more and more studies being produced that analyze mental health in the Latinx community each year as the population grows (and will continue to). Here’s five fast facts from a couple of them:

  • Over 15% of the entire Latinx population in the U.S. have a diagnosable mental illness, which equals approximately 8.9 million people
  • Mental illness is more prevalent in the U.S.-born Latinx population than the foreign-born population
  • Both Latinx males and females in high school are more likely to consider and attempt suicide compared to their white classmates 
  • Latinx females are especially more prone to mental illness and suicide than their male Latinx counterparts, with 1 in 7 attempting suicide in some parts of the country. 
  • Approximately 33% of all Latinx adults with mental illness receive treatment each year.

 

Mental health resources for Latinos in Philly and beyond

If you can’t make it to the Vive Philly fair on Saturday, here are some of the local organizations which offer bilingual (English and Spanish) or Spanish-language counseling services, therapy, and more:

  • Asociación Puertorriqueños en Marcha: The North Philly-based nonprofit offers bilingual diagnoses and treatment for Latinx communities’ mental health issues at their two behavioral health clinics. Appointments are available Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. - 6 p.m. You can contact them at their clinic locations, listed on their web page, to learn more. 
  • COMHAR: This organization provides behavioral health services, along with other community services, in Philadelphia, Montgomery, and Northampton counties. Their Latino Treatment Program at 2600 N. American St. provides bilingual and bicultural outpatient and evaluation services. Walk-ins are welcome from 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, or from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. on Saturdays. You can also call to set up an appointment at (215) 739-2669. 
  • Hispanic Community Counseling Services (HCCS): With locations at 1952 E. Allegheny Ave. and 3221-25 Kensington Ave., HCCS welcomes walk-ins or calls, and is open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Saturday 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. You can call them at 215-291-8151. They provide a range of bilingual behavioral health services for adults and children of all ages.
  • Puentes de Salud: The community health center at 1700 South Street has an on-site behavioral health consultant who works as part of the medical care team to address mental wellness. Behavioral health consultation is available by appointment on Mondays 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., Wednesdays 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., and Thursdays 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

There are also online resources in Spanish and English.

  • Latinx Therapy: The platform, started by licensed therapist Adriana Alejandre of California, has bilingual educational resources, podcasts, and a therapist directory. The idea is that anyone in the Latinx community can access valuable information about their mental health for free, and have the tools in hand to find a therapist if they decide that they would like to explore that treatment. 
  • Psicología y Mente.com: This platform has a variety of useful tools, resources, and articles about mental health in Spanish.

 

This article is part of Broke in Philly, a collaborative reporting project among more than 20 news organizations, focused on economic mobility in Philadelphia. Read all of our reporting at brokeinphilly.org.

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