Date of Award

Spring 2024

Document Type

Project – Full Written

Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)

Committee Chair

Tiffany Stewart


Racial disparities in mental health care persist for Black Americans, with only one in three who need treatment receiving it. The care they do receive is often of a poorer quality than that of other groups. Faith communities serving Black members could help address this gap by partnering with mental health professionals to meet congregants' needs. With mental health now at the forefront of public discourse, considering the specific needs of the Black community is critical. Black Americans face disproportionate mental health burdens but are more likely to seek counsel from clergy due to cultural stigma. Educating clergy on mental health can decrease stigma in their congregations. By improving clergy awareness and comfort with mental health issues, educational programs equip them to identify congregants who need professional assessments and provide support. This doctoral project aimed to identify if targeted efforts by faith communities to support and promote mental health awareness, if provided with appropriate education and adequate resources, could positively impact outcomes in the Black community. The results showed the church is essential in promoting mental health wellness in Black Americans and can influence congregation members being open to exploring receiving care from qualified mental health care professionals.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License

Included in

Nursing Commons