A Safe Space to Dig Deep

Background

In early 2020, representatives from Fairfax County government agencies, National Coalition of 100 Black Women, Inc., NOVA and community partners came together to discuss how to provide an opportunity and safe space for Fairfax residents from the African American/Black community to talk about significant issues affecting their community. The planning group sought to host a community event that would be dedicated to the advancement of Fairfax residents from the African American/Black community.  The planning group also wanted to promote and connect new and existing resources together that empower and uplift the mental, physical, social and financial wellness of the Black community from cradle to grave.  The event would also support One Fairfax, a joint social and racial equity policy of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors and Fairfax County Public Schools that commits the county and schools to consider equity in decision-making and in the development and delivery of future policies, program and services. One Fairfax helps county and school leaders look intentionally, comprehensively and systematically at barriers that may be creating gaps in opportunity.

While the COVID-19 pandemic temporarily delayed planning efforts, the first event was held at the end of June. Due to the success of that initial event, four more events were held throughout the year. Each event provided an opportunity to dig deeper into conversations that address the conditions of COVID-19, inequity, racism, trauma, stigma and other factors that significantly impact the well-being of our African American/Black community. These virtual community events also provided an opportunity to discuss what we can do, individually and collectively, to bring about meaningful and long overdue change to improve outcomes in the lives of our Black community.

This page serves as a repository for all recordings, both audio and video, and resources from the five virtual community events.

Mental Health and Wellness in the Black Community

A Safe Space to Dig Deep

Panelists:

  • Otis Williams III, Ph.D., Chair and Associate Professor, Dept. of Counseling, Bowie State University
  • Randl Dent, Ph.D., Health Equity Scholar, Fitzhugh Mullan Institute for Health Workforce Equity, George Washington University

Moderator:

  • Brian Anderson, LPC, CSAC, Fairfax-Falls Church Community Services Board

 

Watch a recording of the event 

View the presentation slides

Recognizing and Responding to Trauma and Stress During COVID-19 and Racial Crisis

A Safe Space to Dig DeepPanelists:

  • Otis Williams III, Ph.D., Chair and Associate Professor, Dept. of Counseling, Bowie State University
  • Deenan Evans, Ph.D., MSW, Associate Professor of Social Work, Radford University
  • Mireille Tshiteya, Volunteer Defense Attorney and Community Panelist
  • Kimberly, Student Activist and Former Student Representative to Fairfax County Public Schools School Board

Moderator:

  • Brian Anderson, LPC, CSAC, Fairfax-Falls Church Community Services Board

 

Listen to a recording of the event 

View the presentation slides

Adult mental health, civic engagement and voting

A Safe Space to Dig Deep

Panelists:

  • Raymond Paden, LPC, Fairfax-Falls Church Community Services Board
  • Sharon Stone, Social and Political Action Chair, Prince William County Chapter, National Coalition of 100 Black Women
  • Garry Ellis, Registrar Liaison Supervisor, Virginia Department of Elections
  • Kofi Annan, Founder, The Activated People

Moderator:

  • Carrie Register-Haley, Ph.D., Health Committee Chair, Northern Virginia Chapter, National Coalition of 100 Black Women

 

Watch a recording of the event 

Youth mental health, child welfare, education and the juvenile justice system

A Safe Space to Dig Deep

Panelists:

  • D'Angelo Taylor, LPC, Mental Health Counselor/Wellness Coach, Founder of Soundtrack to Life, Fairfax-Falls Church Community Services Board
  • Kishawna Scarborough, Family Support Partner Supervisor, National Alliance of Mental Illness (NAMI) Northern Virginia
  • Leona Smith-Vance, Director of Equity and Family Engagement, Office of Professional Learning and Family Engagement, Fairfax County Public Schools
  • Emma Marshall (retired), Foster Care and Adoptions Support and Resources, Fairfax County Department of Family Services
  • Solomon Melson, LCSW, Operations Manager, Region 1, Fairfax County Department of Neighborhood and Community Services

Moderator:

  • Carrie Register-Haley, Ph.D., Health Committee Chair, Northern Virginia Chapter, National Coalition of 100 Black Women

 

Watch a recording of the event 

Engagement with professionals in mental health, medical services and law enforcement

A Safe Space to Dig Deep

Panelists:

  • Daryl Washington, LCSW, Executive Director, Fairfax-Falls Church Community Services Board
  • Dr. Quinton Lucas, M.D., MBA, CEO, The QuintEssential Doc Family Medicine and Clinical Informatics
  • Captain Darrel Nichols, Equity Lead, Fairfax County Police Department

Moderator:

  • Carrie Register-Haley, Ph.D., Health Committee Chair, Northern Virginia Chapter, National Coalition of 100 Black Women

 

Watch a recording of the event.

Resources

General Resources

Children's Health and Welfare

Educational

Juvenile Justice

Medical Services

Mental Health

Public Safety

Voting

Support for Events

This series of virtual community events was made possible and presented by Fairfax County Government agencies – Neighborhood & Community Services, Health Department, Department of Family Services, and Fairfax-Falls Church Community Services Board – in partnership with Fairfax County Public Schools and the NOVA Chapter of the National Coalition of 100 Black Women.

 

More Information

For additional information, contact Amanda Rogers, Director of Communications, Department of Neighborhood and Community Services, by telephone at 703-324-7150 or by email amanda.rogers@fairfaxcounty.gov.

Fairfax Virtual Assistant