At Kennebec Behavioral Health we are committed to advancing behavioral health equity by not only promoting access to quality behavioral health care for all people in our community, but also by promoting awareness of issues connected to disparities in mental health and substance abuse treatment affecting underserved populations.
We recognize that behavioral health is directly affected by what are frequently called social determinants of health—the conditions in which people are born, grow, work, live and age and the wider forces and systems shaping the conditions of people’s daily lives.
Understanding the complex ways in which social determinants impact behavioral health both here in Maine and across the U.S. contributes to KBH’s ongoing work to offer trauma-informed, culturally responsive care that promotes our vision of healing, empowerment and flourishing for everyone.
This summer, KBH held a week-long series of informational displays commemorating Juneteenth, which was officially recognized as a Maine state holiday in 2022. The displays were provided at each of our six clinics and our four Community Clubhouses during the week, and KBH staff and Clubhouse members were invited to take free informational materials listing podcasts, web resources, books, movies and other sources to learn more about Juneteenth, Black history in the U.S. and the continuing challenges to realizing racial equity in our society.
Awareness-building initiatives like our Juneteenth event, together with many other educational and clinical initiatives, are an important part of KBH’s commitment to advancing behavioral health equity.