Written by Brittany Shawnté
Taraji P. Henson is out here using her platform to make a difference, especially in the African-American community!
The actress has officially launched the Boris Lawrence Henson Foundation (BLHF). Named after Taraji’s father, the foundation’s goal is to break down the stigma surrounding mental health issues among black people.
The BLHF recently held its first event in Beverly Hills, CA, giving guests a chance to shop from Taraji’s own closet. All of the money raised is going to the BLHF’s very first initiative, “A Little Piece of Heaven.” The initiative will bring art to inner city school bathrooms to help combat issues like depression, bullying, and suicide among African-American youth. Often times, violence and self-harm occur in spaces where adults are not present, like school bathrooms. The art will stand to remind kids that they are not alone in life.
Taraji is extremely proud of the work that the foundation has planned and even happier to get to honor her father in the process. “I named the organization after my father because of his complete and unconditional love for me; his unabashed, unashamed ability to tell the truth, even if it hurt; and his strength to push through his own battles with mental health issues,” she shared. “My dad fought in The Vietnam War for our country, returned broken, and received little to no physical and emotional support. I stand now in his absence, committed to offering support to African Americans who face trauma daily, simply because they are black.” Check out Taraji talk more about the foundation with The View below!
The BLHF also launched a Prizeo campaign that gives fans the chance to win a trip to meet Taraji P. Henson at the premiere of her upcoming movie, What Men Want. All donations will support the foundation’s work. You can enter on Prizeo’s website here. If you want to learn more about the foundation, visit the official site at www.blhensonfoundation.org.
I love some Taraji! For one, she’s from DC and went to school in my native area, Prince George’s County, Maryland. She’s also cares about the African-American community and it continues to show with the launch of this new foundation. Mental health is a very real problem, and it’s often swept under the rug in the black community. Often, we are raised to keep things to ourselves or within our family, holding in problems instead of seeking proper treatment. Over time, our people have started to realize the importance of asking for help when it comes to their mental health. I hope that Taraji’s foundation is able to help push that mission.