Founded in 2018, BLHF honors the legacy of Boris Lawrence Henson, the late father of founder Taraji P. Henson. He struggled with untreated mental health issues after returning from the Vietnam War due to inadequate resources or support. Motivated by her own journey to heal from the loss of her father and her son's double bereavement, Ms. Henson encountered a frustrating lack of culturally relevant mental health support. She realized that if she faced difficulties despite available resources, countless others likely did too. In response, she and her best friend, Tracie Jade Jenkins, took a bold step forward and established The Boris Lawrence Henson Foundation. Their mission: to destigmatize mental health within the Black community and enhance its accessibility. Their ultimate goal is to empower individuals by embracing historical legacy and communal healing.
As a pioneering Black mental health advocacy group, BLHF aims to empower individuals to embrace their history, heritage, and collective wounds in empathic and transformative ways. We understand the unique needs of communities of Color and are committed to connecting individuals with culturally competent therapy and wellness resources.
BLHF has built a reputation for providing trusted referrals and demonstrating a deep understanding of the population health of Black people. We work tirelessly to end the stigma around mental health support by offering access to a network of esteemed clinicians, providers, counselors, and thought leaders.
Through impactful programs, awareness campaigns, educational resources, and timely initiatives, BLHF actively promotes mental wellness and raises awareness about the stigma surrounding mental illness. We strive to eradicate the use of stigmatizing language when referring to mental health, fostering an environment of understanding, compassion, and acceptance.
The foundation provides vital mental health resources, encouraging the Black community to seek help and support without fear or shame. By offering access to localized and black-culturally relevant therapy, wellness resources, and a best-in-class network of professionals, we strive to ensure that every individual has the opportunity to receive the care they deserve.
We seek to create a society where mental health in Black communities thrives, where individuals feel empowered to prioritize their well-being through self-regulatory methods, and have access to additional support as they need. By advocating for improved access, combating stigma, and providing essential resources, BLHF is committed to making a lasting impact on mental health outcomes within the Black community.
Joint Letter from our Founder & Executive Director
2023 marks the 5th year anniversary of The Boris Lawrence Henson Foundation.
As we reflect on the past five years, we want to pause to express so much gratitude to our donors, partners, and community. Since our launch in 2018, we have remained committed to our mission of eradicating the stigma around mental health in the Black community.
We continue to dedicate ourselves to changing the narrative by speaking out, and encouraging others to share their challenges with mental illness and to get the help they need.
Through dedicated programming and services over the years, we have seen a significant increase in the participation and conversations around mental wellness, but we still have so much work to do. The systemic challenges that Black communities continue to face are deeply rooted. We are committed to breaking down the barriers to equitable access and positive change. We're excited about what we have planned this year and the impact we will continue to make with your help, as we strive towards mental health equity for all. Joy is indeed our birthright.
Taraji P. Henson and Tracie Jade
Taraji P. Henson and Tracie Jade JenkinsFounder & Executive Director
Boris Lawrence Henson Foundation
Our mission is to create a new tradition of care for Black communities, clearing pathways that allow People of Color to see what their lives look like on the other side of suffering. We help you choose Joy over Everything.
VisionThe Boris L. Henson Foundation's vision is to improve mental health in Black communities by building culturally-competent resources, programs, and education nationwide.
What We're Fighting For
We fight for a better future by advocating for mental health support in schools, reducing the alarming suicide rate among African Americans, addressing mental health issues among the incarcerated population to reduce recidivism rates, increasing the representation of Black therapists, and ensuring more Black individuals receive the care they need. Together, we strive to uplift and transform mental health outcomes in our communities.Impact Report
Meet the Leadership TeamView All Members
Taraji P. HensonPresident, Actress, Filmmaker & Founder
Tracie JadeExecutive Director
Cheryl L. WigginsExecutive Manager