Here for Black Youth

RiseUp powered by Kids Help Phone

Black youth across Canada can access free wellness support 24/7 by texting RISE to 686868 or Facebook Messenger opens in new tab”.

Support from a professional counsellor via phone or Live Chat is also available.

You are brilliant, brave and meant to be here. You are wanted and deserving and rise on the shoulders of great people who have come before.

– Kids Help Phone Manager, Black Youth Initiatives, a program supported by The Slaight Family Foundation

By Community Creator Jah Grey

Here for Black Youth

RiseUp powered by Kids Help Phone

Black youth across Canada can access dedicated wellness support for free, 24/7 by texting RISE to 686868 or Facebook Messengeropens in new tab” .

Support from a professional counsellor via phone or Live Chat is also available.

African, Caribbean and Black youth are connecting for mental health support across Canada

Kids Help Phone supports young people from coast to coast to coast with any issue, big or small. Through anonymous (meaning no personal / identifying details) and aggregated (meaning not individual) data, we’re able to share insights into the ways African, Caribbean and Black youth reach out and get support, as a reminder that no young person is alone.

Respecting young people’s privacy is important to us. We never share data or information from individual conversations. To learn more about Kids Help Phone Insights and how we care for data, you can visit our Insights FAQ.

In the past month, 4.7% of our texters identified as African, Caribbean and Black.

In the past month, 24% of our texters reached out about anxiety and stress. You can get tips and info about these topics on our site.

(School hallway with students and lockers)
(A student opens their locker)
How do they expect us to care about school right now?
(Another student touches their braids)
I really hope no one touches my hair today.
(Another student looks up and down the hallway)
No one gets it. Why do I even try?
(The student holds out a phone)
Kids Help Phone is here for all youth.
Text RISE to 686868
(Kids Help Phone’s logo and contact information)

What is RiseUp powered by Kids Help Phone?

African, Caribbean and Black youth and communities across Canada deserve mental health and well-being support informed by their rich cultures and diverse lived experiences. Kids Help Phone hears directly from young people about the impacts of anti-Black racism. We know that when Black folks need mental health support, they’re often met with limited options and inadequate care. We’re here to help close that gap.

RiseUp powered by Kids Help Phone is a national, 24/7, bilingual e-mental health support service for Black youth. The service is free and available from coast to coast to coast. It’s a program built in collaboration with Black community partners, Kids Help Phone’s Black Advisory Council and people from across the Afro-diaspora of many different ages, genders and backgrounds.

We’re incredibly grateful to our lead donor, The Slaight Family Foundation, and other generous donors for their support of the program.

How does RiseUp support Black youth?

Black youth can text RISE to 686868 or Facebook Messenger opens in new tab” to connect with a trained, volunteer crisis responder. Our volunteer crisis responders will listen to you and help you sort through what’s on your mind — no issue is too big or small. Your texting conversation is confidential. You can learn more about our texting service and duty to report (to emergency services, if you’re at imminent risk or danger) by reading our privacy policy.

You can also get support from a professional counsellor via phone or Live Chat.

RiseUp has three core goals to support Black communities in Canada:

  1. SUPPORTING Black youth: Crisis support, counselling and outreach
  2. ENGAGING with diverse Black communities: Youth, leaders and partners
  3. EMPOWERING with information: Access to data from the frontlines of youth mental health

In the past month, 48% of Black texters practised kindness and patience with themselves as coping tools. Get tips on self-care with this guide.

In the past month, 47% of Black texters mentioned that they felt alone. You can connect with other youth and share your story on the Peer-to-Peer Community at Kids Help Phone.

How are people feeling after texting with Kids Help Phone?

Kids Help Phone is rising to the opportunity to help dismantle anti-Black racism and celebrate Black communities. From our staff to our volunteers to our funders like The Slaight Family Foundation, we are here for Black youth. You can tap on the cards to learn about some of the many supporters in our community.

We rise for Black youth

Kids Help Phone is rising to the opportunity to help dismantle anti-Black racism and celebrate Black communities. From our staff to our volunteers to our funders like The Slaight Family Foundation, we are here for Black youth. You can tap on the cards to learn about some of the many supporters in our community.

Portrait Image of Henrietta Obeng Flip card

Henrietta Obeng (she / her)

Kids Help Phone crisis responder trainee

Portrait Image of Tylene McFarlane Flip card

Tylene McFarlane (she / her)

Kids Help Phone crisis responder coach

Portrait Image of Kingsley Hurlington Flip card

Kingsley Hurlington (he / him)

Crisis responder peer mentor

Portrait Image of Tamar Brannigan Flip card

Tamar Brannigan (they / them)

Kids Help Phone Manager, Black Youth Initiatives, a program supported by The Slaight Family Foundation

Portrait Image of Mel Booker Flip card

Mel Booker (she / her)

Black Advisory Council member

Portrait Image of Alexia Case Flip card

Alexia Case (she / her)

Kids Help Phone texting supervisor

Portrait Image of Kay Thellot Flip card

Kay Thellot (no pronoun preference)

Kids Help Phone professional counsellor

How can I support Black youth, too?

Our texting service is searching for volunteer crisis responders who identify as African, Caribbean, Black or part of the Afro-diaspora. If you want to find out more about this opportunity, you can read about the role and apply on our site. (Don’t forget to let us know that you applied through RiseUp powered by Kids Help Phone!)

In the past month, 91% of Black texters felt their conversation with a volunteer crisis responder was helpful.

How can I raise awareness of RiseUp?

When you raise awareness of RiseUp, you’re helping to support Black folks and mental health in your community. You can download and share the images below with your network to spread the word about RiseUp and Kids Help Phone’s e-mental health services.

How can I stay connected with RiseUp?

We’re stronger together. The RiseUp Network for Black Youth is a way to connect organizations and people who are committed to uplifting African, Caribbean and Black youth and communities. We’d love to stay in contact and share more about supporting youth from across the Afro-diaspora from coast to coast to coast.

Rise Up
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Where can I find additional support for Black youth?

For more information about RiseUp powered by Kids Help Phone, you can use our general inquiry form to contact us or reach out to Tamar Brannigan, Manager of Black Youth Initiatives, a program supported by The Slaight Family Foundation, at (416) 586-5437 ext. 8531 or [email protected].