Module 5 Overview - BLACK MEN AND FAMILY

Cultural Competency Black with Black Men and Boys 

Kevin Washington (Mwata Kairi), PhD


The multifarious assaults on Black men have been pernicious and unrelenting. From the lynching process that included the removal of the genitals of Black men to the psychological moments of castration evident in politics and the education of Blacks. Even as Afrikan American men live in a racially conscious, despiritualizing alien society that seeks to emasculate them at any cost, they can be spiritually powerful. This specialization course is intended to introduce participants to the theory and systems of the practice and process of culturally relevant psychotherapy for Black men. The presenter contends that the psychological healing of Black men can be best achieved through the implementation of a psychotherapeutic healing paradigm that is consistent with the essence and experiences of people of Afrikan ancestry.  To that end, this workshop advances an Afrikan Centered (culturally sensitive) mental health service delivery modality for Black Men and boys.

Course Rationale

Many socio-cultural and psychological variables affect Black men within our society.  These variables include racism, oppression, economic deprivation, and social disenfranchisement.  Such relentless assaults on the psyche often encumber men with feelings of inadequacy that can ultimately result in apathy.  When feelings of apathy and lowered self-worth become a part of a man’s identity, self-negating and community destructive behaviors evolve. Mental health professionals facilitate healing through 1) diagnosing the behavior, 2) exploring the etiology (cause) of the behavior, and 3) prescribing treatment (healing) for the behavior.  Psychology is the area of study that explores human behaviors and their treatment (healing).  Afrikan/Black Psychology deeply examines the essence of being and seeks to align one with their greatest potential.  This Cultural Competence workshop is designed to provide a brief overview of Afrikan/Black Psychology as well as intervention strategies for Black men seeking mental health services.  This workshop examines the dynamics of human beingness from the perspective of Black men living in racially charged environments and offers culturally responsive mental service delivery techniques.


Course Objectives

Upon completion of this course, participants will possess the knowledge to:

  1. Empower Black males and boys to function optimally.
  2. Provide Black boys and men with the tools needed to be positive change agents within their socio-cultural environment.
  3. Increase knowledge efficacy with delivering mental health services to Black boys and men.
  4. Explore feelings and thoughts about the socio-cultural variables that challenge Black boys and men.
  5. Enhance self-awareness and self-efficacy in Black boys and men. 
  6. Provide Black men with techniques that will positively impact their parenting and the self-esteem of their children.
  7. Improve mental health outcomes for Black boys and men. 


Participant Objectives

The objectives of this course are:

  1. To provide a framework for establishing an operational definition of Afrikan/Black Psychology and Psychotherapy,

  2. To discuss the history and development of culturally competent psychotherapy as it pertains to Black boys and men,

  3. To provide participants with a knowledge base into Afrikan/Black mental health service delivery for Black boys/men so that they can elucidate the sociocultural and physiological contributors to the etiology of various mental disorders,

  4. To provide participants with a knowledge foundation into Afrikan/Black Psychotherapy intervention so that they develop the skills to identify possible culturally appropriate mental health diagnosis and treatment (healing) modalities for Black boys and men,

  5. To increase participants’ knowledge base about the theories and application of culturally responsive Psychotherapy for Black boys and men.


Instructional Methodology

To ensure that participants gain the maximum benefit from this course, experiential and didactic instructional modalities are utilized.  Participants are allowed to discuss the presented information, as well as develop their case conceptualization for mental health services.  Various media forms such as PowerPoint presentations and video materials are employed to enhance the teaching/learning process.

A Black man healing paradigm will be presented. Within this paradigm, we will explore the socio-cultural challenges encountered by Black men. So often analysis surrounding Afrikan men centers on the Afrikan Enslavement process which relegates them to simply being the European invention of Negroes.  Afrikan reality predates enslavement rendering the inherent power in Black men as more than an adaptation to White terrorism. We point to ways to heal from the chaos and reclaim the position of being powerful men within the universe.  Reclamation of the internal and external spiritual space is explicated to promote optimal spiritual growth.  We strive to reawaken the consciousness of Afrikan men. Let the healing began.