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October 19, 2021 60 min

Men within the BIPOC community face unique barriers when it comes to taking care of their mental health. Whether it’s cultural stigma or orthodox definitions of masculinity, men have historically shied away from seeking help for their mental health but experiences with racism, micro-aggressions and police brutality are just some of the factors impacting BIPOC men. For example, Indigenous men have a suicide rate that is double that of the Canadian national average. To shed more light on men and their mental health, 20-year student, Shemar Barnett, joins this episode of the podcast to share his story of navigating anti-Black racism and exposure to gun violence at a very young age and how it shaped his approach to mental health. Also featured is PhD candidate and mental health advocate, Varun Joshi, who talks about managing family pressures and expectations while also dealing with depression, addiction and anxiety. To close the episode, counsellor Khan Bouba-Dalambaye shares his insights into how the idea of resilience and strength in BIPOC communities can sometimes be a trap and a barrier to accessing help.


Here are the various conversations:


@04:34 – Shemar Barnett


@23:21 – Varun Joshi


@42:06 - counsellor Khan Bouba-Dalambaye



This episode contains discussion on mental health issues. Listener discretion is advised. If you or someone you know is in crisis please go to your local hospital or call 911 immediately. For information about services in your area, please visit To reach the Canada Suicide Prevention Service, call 1.833.456.4566 or 1.866.APPELLE in Québec (1.866.277.3553).



Other resources:


Generation Chosen


SOCH Mental Health


Khan Bouba-Dalambaye


Bell Let’s Talk

Mark as Played

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