Achieving Whole Health for Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islanders



Policymakers and researchers are discovering what Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander (AANHPI) communities have always known--that you cannot separate the mind, body and spirit. Data now shows a direct correlation between depression, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, stress disorders, cancer and other health problems and that failure to address underlying mental health conditions can have adverse effects on a person’s overall health. Studies have found that individuals with serious mental health conditions die 25 years earlier than the general population.

The training track Achieving Whole Health: Balancing Body, Mind and Spirit for Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders recognizes the important relationship between mental health and physical health, and seeks to train AANHPIs to become Wellness Coaches who can fill an important gap in services. Wellness Coaches work with community members, who are often isolated due to cultural and language barriers, to help them take an active role in improving their health by reducing stress, improving diet and exercise, learning important self-care skills, and building personal resiliency by addressing not only physical needs, but also the needs of one’s mind and spirit. The Whole Health sessions can be delivered by Wellness Coaches through group sessions and one-on-one peer support that help individuals prioritize and focus on achieving their health goals.

Training mental health consumers, along with professionals and bilingual paraprofessionals, adds an additional depth to the treatment team by engaging individuals who can draw upon their lived experience to help others recognize their symptoms before they reach a crisis, role model strength-based approaches and most importantly, know that recovery is possible.


Organizations may propose a team of 3 to 5 members. Strong preference will be given to AANHPI-serving organizations that can provide an organizational leader (manager or supervisor), as well as consumer peer advocate(s), bilingual paraprofessionals, and/or bilingual clinicians working on integrated care teams.


  • Participants will learn the 10 life elements and how to balance body, mind and spirit life domains for whole health.
  • Participants will learn how to coach others through these life elements for better personal understanding.
  • Participants will learn the Person Centered Planning Process to help others develop Whole Health Action Plans.
  • Participants will learn how to support others in pursuit of whole health goals through weekly groups, personal logs and one-on-one coaching.

Questions to consider before applying for Achieving Whole Health

  • Is your organization working to integrate behavioral health with primary health?
  • Are your programs working to become wellness- and recovery-oriented?
  • Do you currently employ or are you interested in employing consumers in recovery? Peer specialists?
  • Do you employ or would you employ bilingual paraprofessionals?
  • Is your organization interested is running wellness groups for consumers?

Criteria for selection of participants

Strong preference will be given to AANHPI-serving organizations and their staff and consumers who are working to integrate behavioral health with physical health in pursuit of a recovery-oriented, whole health treatment approach.


Janet SooHoo, MSW, Training Director, National Asian American Pacific Islander Mental Health Association
DJ Ida, PhD, Executive Director, National Asian American Pacific Islander Mental Health Association

Important dates

  • Pre-Work Webinar: Monday, March 24, 2014 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm ET
  • On-Site Training: April 6 - April 9, 2014 (Santa Ana Pueblo, New Mexico)
  • Coaching Call: To be determined with each organizational team

Post-Training Webinars:

  • Friday, June 13, 2014 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm ET
  • Friday, July 11, 2014 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm ET
  • Friday, August 8, 2014 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm ET

Information for all webinars is posted on the Discussion Forum under the "Meeting and Logistics" thread.


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