DC Grandparents for Mental Health

DC Grandparents for Mental Health is a movement by adults 60+
years of age in Washington, DC, united in promoting mental health through peer-to-peer and intergenerational conversations and interventions. 

Building on the success of DC Grandparents for COVID-19, the goal is to provide mental health support to community members of all ages from trusted older people.  


In 2022, HelpAge USA launched DC Grandparents for COVID-19, a pilot program that empowered 500 older, primarily Black adults in Washington, DC, to be agents of change. But, their work didn’t stop there. Now, with HelpAge USA’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 DC Grandparents for Mental Health came from the members of DC 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.


Building on DC Grandparents Against COVID-19, as well as the success of programs like the Friendship Bench in Zimbabwe and other programs that train laypeople to provide mental health care, DC Grandparents for Mental Health will enable members of the African American community of all ages to receive mental health support from trusted older people. 

A curriculum of educational sessions will provide basic training to grandparents about mental health symptoms and different types of interventions; allow grandparents to share success stories and lessons learned; and foster a sense of community.

Check Us Out on WHUTtv!

In this episode of “The Daily Drum with Harold Fisher,” DC Grandparents for Mental Health expert Dr. Gigi El-Bayoumi and participant Grace Whitmire discuss the topic of seniors and mental health in Black America.

Get Involved!

For more information about partnerships or volunteering with DC Grandparents for Mental Health, please contact us at 202-709-8442 or info@helpageusa.org.

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