When we launched DC Grandparents Against COVID-19 in 2022, we brought together 500 older, primarily Black adults in Washington, DC, to be agents of change. But, their work didn’t stop there. Now, with HelpAge’s support, they’re taking on mental health, determined to be part of the solution by learning how to effectively support others in their community.
The idea for Grandparents for Mental Health came from the members of Grandparents Against COVID-19 themselves, observing the mental health crisis and struggles of their loved ones and others in their community. Some have faced their own mental health challenges over the course of their lives and want to stop patterns of secrecy and stigma.
As we reflect on the importance of mental health, we must draw on the experiences of older people and recognize that their wisdom and lessons learned can be passed down and shared. For those still learning to navigate life’s challenges and form healthy coping skills of our own, their knowledge offers an important gift. Here are a few tips and pieces of advice that our DC Grandparents have learned over the years when it comes to managing anxiety, depression, and mental wellness.