Peace and Healing Centers Now Open Across LA
Nine Peace and Healing centers across Los Angeles County are now open to bring mental health services and other resources to the communities impacted most by systemic racism.
L.A.'s Civil + Human Rights and Equity Department (LA Civil Rights) launched nine Peace and Healing centers as a pilot program to create physical spaces where communities with high rates of pollution, poverty and violence can go to heal.
Why it matters
The centers are located in L.A. REPAIR Zones, which stands for Reforms for Equity and Public Acknowledgement of Institutional Racism. These zones account for half of Angelenos living in poverty in overcrowded areas. About 87% of people living in these zones are people of color, according to LA Civil Rights.
The $2 million pilot program will offer 20 hours a week of free healing programs tailored to the needs of their communities. "In Westlake, it's community gardens, nutrition classes, and a women's healing group. In Pacoima, it's street vendor permitting and financial literacy courses. And Skid Row, it's something totally different, it's healing through art, meditation and shared meals," said Capri Maddox, executive director of LA Civil Rights and board trustee for Southern California Public Radio.
"There's so much trauma in our communities right now," Maddox said, adding that with gun violence, police brutality and economic stress as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, people need spaces to heal. "There's so many folks in these communities that have been wronged for so long and they need a safe space to heal. And this is what the Peace and Healing centers will do," she said.
"Too often, communities suffering from historic neglect are continually ignored. Today is a step towards breaking away from that status quo," said Mayor Karen Bass in a statement.
Is there a center near me?
Here's a list of the Peace and Healing centers:
- Para Los Niños in the South LA REPAIR Zone.
- Volunteers of America Los Angeles (VOALA) in the Southeast LA REPAIR Zone.
- Bryant Temple AME Community Development Corporation in the West Adams, Leimert Park, and Baldwin Village REPAIR Zone.
- Central City Neighborhood Partners (CCNP) in the Westlake REPAIR Zone.
- YMCA LA in the Wilmington and Harbor Gateway REPAIR Zone.
- Proyecto Pastoral in the Boyle Heights REPAIR Zone.
- Creating Justice LA in the Skid Row REPAIR Zone.
- El Nido Family Centers in Arleta-Pacoima REPAIR Zone and Mission Hills - Panorama City - North Hills REPAIR Zone.
For more information, you can visit the Los Angeles Civil + Human Rights and Equity Department.
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