Resources for BIPOC Mental Health

July is BIPOC Mental Health Month. It was created in 2008 to bring awareness to the unique struggles that underrepresented groups face related to mental illness in the communities of Black, Indigenous, and People of Color. Magination Press has several stories that address these unique struggles and open the door for discussion. This year, we feature the Something Happened books. The Something Happened books present and explain sensitive and important events happening in communities across the United States and around the world. Told in clear, compelling stories, the books come with the authority of psychological expertise from the American Psychological Association. They include:  Something Happened in Our Town: A Child's Story of Racial Injustice, which is a New York Times and #1 IndieBound bestseller, and one of ALA's most banned books; Something Happened in Our Park: Standing Together After Gun Violence, which was nominated for The Goddard Riverside CBC Youth Book Prize for Social Justice; and  Something Happened to My Dad: A Story About Immigration and Family Separation. Something Happened to My Dad: A Story About Immigration and Family Separation by Ann Hazzard, PhD ABPP and Vivianne Aponte Rivera, MD In this realistic and empowering tale, Carmen learns that through community and love, she can find strength in herself and maintain her connection with her Papi, who has been detained because of his immigration status. Carmen loves doing magic with her Papi. He can make sarapes fly. He can make rabbits vanish! But one day, her Papi vanishes. She is sad and scared when she learns he has been detained because he is an undocumented immigrant from Mexico. At first, Carmen’s family keeps Papi’s detention a secret, fearing that they might be judged negatively. As Carmen's community becomes aware of their situation, they rally around her family with love. Carmen learns she can find strength in herself and maintain her connection with Papi, no matter what happens. Read and excerpt from the adult-child dialog section.  Check out the English version of the book here and the Spanish version here. Something Happened In Our Town: A Child’s Story About Racial Injustice by Marianne Celano, PhD, ABPP, Marietta Collins, PhD and Ann Hazzard, PhD ABPP Emma and Josh heard that something happened in their town. A Black man was shot by the police. “Why did the police shoot that man?” “Can police go to jail?” Something Happened in Our Town follows two families — one White, one Black — as they discuss a police shooting of a Black man in their community. The story aims to answer children’s questions about such traumatic events, and to help children identify and counter racial injustice in their own lives. Includes an extensive Note to Parents and Caregivers with guidelines for discussing race and racism with children, child-friendly definitions, and sample dialogues. Hear Something Happened in Our Town read aloud here. Hear a podcast with Marianne Celano, PhD, ABPP about talking with children about racism here. Check out the book here. Something Happened in Our

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Resources for BIPOC Mental Health 2022-07-26T14:30:28-04:00

Immigration: Helping Kids Understand Mixed-Status Families and Family Separation

Something Happened to My Dad: A Story About Immigration and Family Separation is an important book about the immigration and family separation experience. Available in English and Spanish, this critical resource has an extensive Reader’s Note with a glossary for Spanish language words and vocabulary list with kid-friendly definitions of immigration-related terms, adult-child dialog scripts, strategies for fostering cultural sensitivity, special considerations for mixed-status families, information about the illustrations, and additional resources. In the story, Carmen is sad and scared when she learns her father has been detained because he is an undocumented immigrant. In this realistic and empowering tale, Carmen learns that through community and love, she can find strength in herself and maintain her connection with her Papi, who has been detained because of his immigration status. Here’s a short excerpt from the adult-child dialog section with conversations that might be initiated by children. It includes sample answers for parents and caregivers to questions from children.   Q: Why did Carmen’s mom tell her to keep it secret that her dad was in a detention center? A: Carmen’s mother might not have wanted people to treat them differently or feel sorry for them. Sometimes people keep secrets because it is upsetting to talk about something. Have you ever kept something secret so you would not have to talk about it? Q: Why do people need papers to stay in the country? A: Countries have laws about who can move in and governments give people documents (“papers”) to show that they have been approved to stay. Some people in the U.S. want our immigration laws to be strict, while other people believe that we should have laws that welcome many immigrants. Q: What happens after someone without papers is detained (arrested)? A: Once a person without papers is detained, they are taken to a detention center to wait until they can meet with an immigration judge. Sometimes the person is released on bail (money paid) and can instead wait in their home in the U.S. until their court date. Not everyone qualifies for or can afford to pay bail. The immigration judge decides if the person can stay or must go back to their home country (be deported). In recent years, some children have been separated from their parents or family while they wait for their court date with the immigration judge. Q: Are immigrants without papers criminals? A: Most crimes, like stealing, drunk driving, or assault with a weapon, are actions that can hurt other people. That is why those behaviors are against the law or illegal. Immigrants without papers can be arrested for crossing the border illegally. But this is not a crime that directly hurts other people. Most immigrants, with or without papers, obey U.S. laws designed to protect us. Q: A boy in my class hardly speaks any English. Why? A: Some families speak a different language at home and the children do not learn English until they start school. Other children have recently

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Immigration: Helping Kids Understand Mixed-Status Families and Family Separation 2022-05-25T14:31:53-04:00

Tips to Help Your Child Manage Scary News

Whether from television news reports, the car radio, digital media, or adult discussions, children are often bombarded with information about the world around them. When the events being described include violence, extreme weather events, a disease outbreak, or discussions of more dispersed threats such as climate change, children may become frightened and overwhelmed.  The latest installment in the bestselling What To Do series, What to Do When the News Scares You: A Kid’s Guide to Understanding Current Events by Jacqueline B. Toner, PhD, provides a way to help children put scary events into perspective. And, if children start to worry or become anxious about things they’ve heard, there are ideas to help them calm down and cope. This book also helps children identify reporters’ efforts to add excitement to the story which may also make threats seem more imminent, universal, and extreme. This adapted excerpt from the Introduction to Parents and Caregivers provides strategies to help kids understand and process the messages around and to put scary events into perspective. Keep these tips in mind as you help your child through scary times:  Children’s ability to cope with scary events varies with age and with the child.  Limit young children’s exposure to news stories as much as you can. When you are unable to limit their exposure due to your own needs for information, be available to interpret messages for them.  Consider how you access news and how that may impact children nearby. Reading news on your own is the least likely to accidentally transfer information to children; television news is more likely to include frightening visuals and sound effects. Listen to the child’s concerns before offering explanations. Ask what they have heard and what that information means to them. You may uncover misperceptions and unfounded fears which need correcting. Tell the truth but gently. Don’t brush off a child’s concerns but present hopeful information with the truth. Include information about how the event is being dealt with and people are being cared for. Be careful not to let your own fears result in sharing information based upon speculation about possible future developments.  Help your child put the event in perspective. While you may have a sense that a threat is far away, limited in scope, being managed, or even in the past, don’t assume that your child understands this.  Comment to your child about the ways in which news reports may be making things seem more dire than they are.  Help older children become active consumers of the news by teaching them which news sources can be trusted and why. Be sure to point out sources of information that are likely to be misleading, especially online.  Remind the child that you and other adults around them will keep them safe. Use concrete examples when you can.  Maintain routines and don’t let news intrude on normal daily activities (no TV news during dinner).  Encourage children to employ coping strategies designed to reduce over excitement and anxiety if they become

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Tips to Help Your Child Manage Scary News 2022-05-25T10:59:43-04:00