AAPI Mental Health Resources
Community, Self-Care, Healing, Support, and Action
JA-NE is grateful to collaborate with Denver artist BAKEMONO0504 in order to provide our community with #IAMNOTBROKEN merchandise to amplify this important message of inner strength and resilience.
We will donate 50% of all proceeds to support 501(c)(3) non-profit organizations the Asian Pacific Development Center and Asian American Mental Health Collective.
We will also continue to update the below resources as we receive them - nobody should feel alone in their struggles with mental health.
From the Artist: "The Japanese art of Kintsugi teaches us how to see the beauty through the reinvention of ourselves. This healing process makes us stronger than before and, where we once felt weakened, we now radiate with resilience.
I believe we are the demons we talk about and maybe instead ridding ourselves of these demons who are actually us, we can heal these demons. Turn our scars into a gold bond that holds us together."
Since the start of the pandemic, the Asian American community has experienced an increase in violent attacks and verbal insults. Experiencing these racially-charged incidents may cause re-traumatization of past experiences. For many Asian Americans, a first memory of discrimination and embarrassment was in the lunchroom.
In collaboration with the Colorado Asian Culture and Education Network (CACEN), we asked members of the community to respond to a statewide call for visual artwork, photography, and stories reflecting moments when they felt they were judged due to the cultural foods that they enjoy. By sharing these stories, it brings a sense of community and healing to know that we are not alone in these experiences, and that it’s time to be proud of the foods of our families.
#I AM NOT BROKEN
How do we heal? How do we honor the strength within ourselves when we feel broken?
In 2020 the Japanese Arts Network partnered with the McNichols Civic Center Building and Denver Arts & Venues to bring the community the program 'Kintsugi: the Art of Healing, Finding Beauty in Repair. This program continues to hold importance and relevance as we move into May of 2021 which is Mental Health Awareness Month as well as Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Month in the United States. 2021 is a year that has challenged Asian communities and other marginalized communities of color with the rise in Anti-Asian hate crimes and internal and external biases, the ramifications of white supremacy and social injustice, and ongoing tragedies caused by racism, fear, and ignorance.
We encourage you to take time for yourself and show yourself love and care. Acknowledging the need for ourselves to make space for processing and to take care of our own mental, physical, and emotional health is crucial. Self-care takes many forms including reaching out to talk to somebody (we've provided some resources below) and giving yourself space to breathe and regenerate.
We each carry experiences that may make us feel broken, however, as Kintsugi teaches us - through the process of repairing the cracks that connect our broken pieces, we may build resilience and strength. Though these cracks might initially be perceived as weakness, if we take care of ourselves and one another with compassion and empathy we may heal like the golden seams of a piece of once broken pottery that now shine with fractured beauty.
Listen to JA-NE founder, Courtney Ozaki and artist Narkita Gold, in conversation with Platte Forum on the ArtMoves Podcast about Kintsugi, the art of healing, and finding beauty in imperfection.
North American Asian Pacific Islander Mental Health Association