Parental Depression in Low-Income Culturally Diverse Communities

This project seeks to identify and support culturally-responsive community education, treatment and recovery for parents living with depression to ensure the development of resilience and optimal outcomes for their children.  


Purpose: To identify and disseminate information about effective approaches to addressing depression in communities of color, with particular emphasis on effective strategies for education, prevention and interventions that reduce the impact of depression on parents and their children.  Evidence suggests that community education, a focus on effective parenting, and earlier interventions that are culturally appropriate can mitigate the costly burden of depression in these communities.

Population Addressed: All major racial/ethnic populations.

Rationale and Relevance:

  • Depression is the most common of all mental health problems and amenable to effective treatment, if identified in time.
  • Poverty and stress play a significant role in the onset of depression, as well as access to preventive & treatment programs. 
  • Low-income mothers of color have high rates of depression (little is known about depression in fathers of color).
  • Culture often determines how depression is understood, expressed and treated.
  • Most depression in communities of color goes unrecognized and untreated.
  • Depression affects parenting and outcomes for children.
  • A family-focused, multigenerational model is needed to effectively address depression in communities of color.

Projected Outcomes:

  • Create a compendium of strategies that address what is working.
  • Develop journal articles, issue briefs, community newsletters that document effective strategies for addressing depression in diverse communities.
  • Develop effective communication vehicles to showcase effective approaches and strategies for effectively addressing depression.
  • Inform policy and practice by expanding the knowledge base.


  • Watch the recording of Community-Based Responses to Maternal Depression from the NNED Forum Call on November 17, 2010.
  • Watch the recording of Community-Based Responses to Parental Depression from the NNED Forum Call


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