Seven Organizations Launch Latino Mental Health Navigator Programs

The Ohio Commission on Hispanic/Latino Affairs [OCHLA] has partnered with the Cultural and Linguistic Competency Bureau within the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services to develop seven Latino Mental Health Navigator Programs in areas throughout Ohio.

From March 1, 2022, to March 15, 2023, OhioMHAS will provide more than $735,000 in grant funding to assist local organizations to develop their Navigator programs. The program seeks to reduce disparities in availability, accessibility, and quality of behavioral healthcare services for members of the Hispanic-Latino community.

The organizations that have launched projects include HOLA (Ashtabula), OCCHA (Youngstown), Proyecto Raices (Akron), the Our Lady of Guadalupe Center (Columbus), Su Casa (Cincinnati), Del Pueblo (Springfield) and El Puente (Dayton.)

With projects underway, the cohort will soon begin a series of training sessions with El Centro de Servicios Sociales in Lorain, Ohio, where the Latino Mental Health Navigator’s design was created and has served as an important source of support in the community there for many years.

With support from OCHLA, OhioMHAS, and El Centro, each project will aim to identify and target structural barriers for the populations they serve, promote engagement in behavioral healthcare, and facilitate navigation of systems of care. Funding will be used to assist Latinos who may experience disparities related to COVID-19 with accessing health, mental health and safety information, and local resources.

EDITOR’S NOTE: The Ohio Latino Affairs Commission (OCHLA) advises state government on issues affecting Hispanic Ohioans, connects the diverse Latino communities across the state, and builds the capacity of community organizations so they may better serve the fast-growing Latino population of Ohio.