At this tail end of Mental Health Awareness Month and Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, we have a pile of great resources to counteract loneliness, depression, anxiety, and fear with stories of community and belonging, the joy of unique strengths and beauty, the power of interconnectedness, the resilience found in self-care, and the empowerment that comes from protecting other humans and the planet. We’re all in this together!

ONE

Sarah Rising (Beaming) is inspired by the Minneapolis Uprising of 2020. Experienced from a child’s-eye view, it offers children an opportunity to talk about why people protest racial injustice and highlights how important it is to belong to a community of people who protect each other.

Care-givers eager to support children in activism will experience “delight, hope, and joy through cultivating values of kindness, justice, and ecological care in the lives of children” in, Parenting for a Better World: Social Justice Practices for Your Family and the Planet (Chalice).

Find additional resources to support conversations about Social Justice with all ages in our lib guide.

TWO

Ground Littles in their own sense of belonging by encouraging strong familial bonds and intergenerational relationships – and an appreciation for the sacredness of food in every culture – with Tofu Takes Time (Beaming). [A super book for AAPI Heritage celebrations and possibly a great book for preparing to receive Holy Communion…]

THREE

A sense of belonging is engendered by an awareness of being seen and loved for who you are. Celebrate each of your Littles – in all their unique strengths and beauty – and God’s love for each of them with, I Am God’s Dream (Penguin). Illustrated Ministry created a FREE accompanying activity kit, to boot!

Help adults ‘learn’ to see more clearly with Seeing the Unseen:Beyond Prejudices, Paradigms, and Party Lines (Church).

FOUR

Expand that way of seeing – and tending to diversity – with Contemplative Gardening (Morehouse), which connects tending the earth with tending to our souls, the planet and one another.

FIVE

To tend to anything or anyone well, we must attend to what is real. What’s Here Now? How to Stop Rehashing the Past and Rehearsing the Future – and Start Receiving the Present (Baker) invites us to ‘experience freedom from unhealthy patterns of relating to God and others’ by forging new ways of seeing devoid of guilt, shame, or anxiety.

Find additional tools and tips for self-care in our Personal Care for Care-Givers lib guide.

SIX

M Health Fairview Interfaith Health Collaborative has created concrete resources for those who find themselves in a care-giver role for people contemplating suicide. If you are one such person, please avail yourself of Suicide Prevention Competence for Faith Leaders: Supporting a Life Before, During and After a Suicide Crisis; A Quick Reference on Mental Health for Faith Leaders; and National Mental Health Awareness Month Webinar Series.

Find additional resources to assist in caring for others in our Mental Health & Addictions lib guide and find local, regional, and national intervention specialists in our Mental Health Hotlines and Interventions lib guide.

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I hope these inspire self-care which deepens your resilience to care for others and the planet!!