Chynna is Caribbean American and a Womanist in every way. Her mother’s Trinidadian roots and her father’s Puerto Rican heritage are integral to who she is, how she loves herself and how she loves others. In different counseling iterations over the years, first as a substance abuse counselor and later as a case manager, she watched patients wrestle with their pain while knowing there was a better way but lacking the skills and knowledge. For her it is not about solving issues for her patients, but rather introducing more light for them, so that they are able to see their own path to liberation from pain. Over time, Chynna learned the deep power of curiosity and the roaring strength of silence. She learned to love the non-linear healing and wholeness that inevitably reveals itself to patients. She believes in each patient, and that the goals for change they set out for themselves are attainable. It is imperative to her that it is the patient’s goals, not her own, that are primary. The value she adds to the lives of her patients is that she approaches her work from a strengths-based perspective. In assessment, she spends time identifying her patient’s strengths, because these can often be overlooked. Drawing upon these strengths, Chynna helps patients see their own resources for change and growth. Unlearning long held patterns is important work that requires patience. Having patience as a guide to help patients learn to replace unhelpful patterns is key to developing healthier ways of seeing themselves, others and the world. Chynna knows wellness is achievable so she continues to offer hope and possibility as patients grow towards their goals. Her practice is unique in the way she infuses humor throughout her work. Chynna hopes that patients graduate from working with her feeling confident in their abilities to recognize and meet their needs with deeper knowledge and commitment to their own healing journey.
Maria is a first-generation Mexican-American woman who has worked in the mental health field and with the geriatric population for over 10 years. She has provided grief counseling, transitional support through life changes with couples, families and groups of unrelated persons. We are all individuals who require different interventions for navigating our personal goals and challenges/changes in life. The process of creating individual plans based on a patient’s strengths and resources is a creative process that helps Maria find joy and excitement in the work that she does. She loves that her work allows patients to build their tool box for managing phases in their lives. In addition to being a psychotherapist, Maria is a Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist (CTRS), Substance Use Disorder Rehabilitation Counselor (SUDRC) and Zumba Instructor.
Giselle is an Afro-Latina, Army Veteran, survivor, and overcomer. She is also fluent in Spanish. She has always known her calling was to become a therapist in order to help others overcome. After serving in the military, Giselle felt she needed to get into the field to better support and serve those who are struggling and need guidance toward the light out of darkness. She enjoys working with patients who are brave enough to reach out for help and willing to work towards reaching their goals. She walks alongside her patients, helps them process, and teaches them tools and skills to their goals. Giselle adds value to her patients’ lives by giving them her full attention, showing them she is invested in their wellbeing, and by being there for them every step of the way. Giselle most enjoys the therapeutic relationship and seeing progress in the work she does. She uses her own life experiences and curiosity to empathize and validate her patients. She wishes for her patients to graduate from therapy feeling like they no longer need it because they’ve learned the tools and skills they need to make it and to also feel secure knowing that if they ever need help they can reach out anytime.
BIPOC Mothers offers support and solidarity within a society that is inherently racist and patriarchal.
Do you identify as BIPOC* (Black, Indigenous, and/or a Person of Color/non-white) in the early stages of motherhood?
Have you struggled to find a moms group that centers YOUR experiences?
We welcome BIPOC mothers of all genders, those who are pregnant or have a pregnant partner, trying to conceive, adopting, postpartum, and up to their child’s first year of life. Note: AAPI- identified moms are welcome here too!
I am a licensed clinical social worker with over 7 years of experience providing psychotherapy to adults, teens, and youth. Before starting my private practice, I worked as a clinician and clinical manager at a community-based mental health program in Oakland serving APIs (Asian Pacific Islanders) and immigrants and refugees from various parts of the world. In this setting, not only was I able to develop a high standard of clinical rigor in my work, but I found and grew a passion for mental health advocacy, outreach, and preventive education. I worked on several projects aimed at reducing mental health stigma among high-risk populations including Asian seniors, adults with severe mental illnesses, and my personal favorite, high school and college students.
I became interested in ethnic studies and the social work/mental health professions as a Sociology undergraduate student at the University of San Francisco, particularly after doing my senior field work placement at a residential substance abuse recovery program serving the API community. I went on to attain masters degrees in Asian American Studies and Social Welfare at UCLA. These two disciplines are grounded deeply in the pursuit of equality and social justice, and they continue to inform how I see the world and try to empower others to change and grow. While at UCLA, I researched the experiences of Filipinx Americans and wrote my master’s thesis on racial microaggressions experienced by Filipinx American youth in Hawaii, where I grew up. Simultaneously, I studied social work and did field placements at a program serving the homeless community in Los Angeles (my first year) and in the Los Angeles Unified School District’s School Mental Health Program (my second year). Additionally, I attained the Pupil Personnel Services Credential (PPSC) which allows me to practice social work in California’s K-12 public schools.
I am an experienced Licensed Clinical Social Worker and owner of 180 Urban Wellness, a wellness company of anxiety and depression therapists specializing in supporting BIPOC and LGBTQ+ identifying adults to overcome self-doubt, fear and trauma to live more fulfilling lives through incorporating mindfulness therapy and holistic services. We incorporate mindfulness based practices into our therapy sessions to address the mind body connection that Western approaches do not address.
Our practice is 100% virtual and your work with us will include identifying what your main challenges are, developing a plan to address them, and learning specific skills to cope and improve your overall well-being.
Rooted in trauma-informed social justice and holistic perspectives, I’m passionate about facilitating transformative healing processes and empowering skill-building with people of all ages. Together, we can attend to what is happening and needed on the levels of mind, heart, body, and spirit for healing trauma and nurturing resilience.
You can expect me to be warm and curious, honest and engaged, open-minded and deeply affirming. I hold deep appreciation for multicultural experience and identity, and it’s especially meaningful for me to work with people who are marginalized by institutions of power and privilege.
I move through the world as a second generation Asian American woman, empath, life long learner, auntie, evolving spirit, and lover of nature, creative expression, and embodied movement. I believe in the power of joy, vulnerability, and authentic expression in forging a path towards personal and collective liberation.
Join AMJ and Christhmus Presence for pay-as-you-may virtual group therapy. Sessions start 8/24. Late enrollment closes 9/7.
Sessions are 90 minutes and will be held once a week over the course of 10 weeks. Group capacity is 8-10 people.
About AMJ (they/them/their):
AMJ, ASW is a queer, disabled, nonbinary Black femme descendant of Africans who were enslaved in the Southeastern United States and ultimately settled in Low Country/Gullah Geechee/Lower Creek/Yamasee lands (Savannah, GA). They are a “coachy therapist”, focused on helping (QT)BIPOC blend ancestral healing traditions with therapeutic approaches such as Brainspotting, healing-centered (aka trauma-informed) therapy, expressive arts, aromatherapy, and problem-solving. AMJ resides in San Pedro and takes care of self via gardening, music, food, and their adorably snarky doggo named Dilla.
About Christhmus (pronoun at your pleasure):
Christhmus Presence (Chris Chu) will be facilitating all groups above, and is a 3.5-generation Muwekma Ohlone (San Francisco) land-settler, and Chinese-American Queer by Ancestors’ way of Guangdong, China. Pillars that guide them are liberation psychology, narrative psychology, somatic psychology, trauma-informed therapy, spirituality, and expressive arts. Tools held in support of self-resourcing, clarity, and ancestral connectivity include meditation, Tapping, and Brainspotting. They enjoy plants, creative expression, the power of community, and being in water.
Registered Associate MFT #125037 through The Center for Mindful Psychotherapy, supervised by Shawana Booker LCSW #29165
Hello, I’m Kamaria, a third year art therapy graduate student, at Notre Dame de Namur University. I am looking for adults of Color who have experienced racialized trauma in their educational experiences to be part of a therapeutic arts healing group and study for 4 weeks (90 min on zoom).
My path to Art Therapy encompassed growth and discovery in the fields of education, social services, mental health, community organizing, vocational rehabilitation, political, and legal fields. During these varied experiences she was introduced to art making and discovered the therapeutic nature of art through personal process. The universality of Art Therapy is beautiful, every individual ranging from nonverbal with physical limitations to extremely able cognitively and physically, can benefit from it. With a BA in International Studies from UNC-Charlotte, Kamaria’s multi-cultural knowledge will enhance her ability to work with various communities and accommodate traditional healing needs. Kamaria looks forward to continuing to work in underserved communities and helping destigmatize therapy, as Art Therapy is the bridge that allows traditional talk therapy to be more accessible and less intimidating, especially for those often forgotten and omitted from history.
For adults who are ready to go from internal turmoil and suffering as the result of old wounds to thriving with internal safety and social confidence!
Have you ever wondered what it might be like to better understand your inner world and how to:
– slow down or completely stop being triggered & high jacked
– quiet the inner critic or inner perfectionist that sabotages your greatest efforts
– release yourself from the grip of stuck, stale and painful relationship patterns
This group uses Internal Family Systems (IFS) as a foundation for teaching about parts of your personality and exploring how they interact with each other. Group members will learn to recognize and identify those emotions, thoughts and reactions that create internal and external challenges throughout life. Sessions will include getting to know those parts of ourselves, and learning how to access the core qualities of a Self that is present within all of us.
With others, you will have an opportunity to:
– Work through discomfort and anxiety so that you can achieve the level of closeness and intimacy you desire
– Courageously connect with vulnerability and anger rather than engaging in avoidance and repression
– Experiment with expression of Self which will help you to increase assertiveness, self-confidence and calm
– Practice welcoming all of your parts while increasing presence, awareness and mindfulness
IFS is a powerful tool that can help you achieve greater well-being and balance by not only becoming more aware of these internal patterns, but by going toward them with curiosity and compassion to better understand and heal them.
Get to know your Self better, understand why you act the way you do, and develop a toolkit you can use to empower your sense of courage and creativity.
NEXT Step? Email our office to schedule a brief phone chat with leaders Karla. We would be delighted to answer any questions you have about the group and support you with preparing for the learning and growing experience ahead.