- 08 Dec 21
Blessing Dada shares her thoughts and experiences as part of 100 Voices: #AllAgainstRacism.
Ethnic Minority Mental Health Advocate / Relief Youth Support Worker at Crosscare
Growing up in Ireland, racism would’ve been one of the reasons why I currently have mental illnesses, and why I became a mental health advocate. There was a lot of bullying and discrimination. With the other things that were going on in the background in my childhood, it didn’t help that my family were also being discriminated against.
Fast forward to now, I’m a mental health advocate on social media. I do a lot of work in that area. I feel like the mental health community in Ireland is safe ground for the white community, who claim to be mental health advocates, but are not also anti-racist. But you can’t be pro-mental health advocacy without being anti-racist.
It comes from a place of ignorance. Us Irish people are always having the craic and the banter, saying, ‘It’s not that bad’, or ‘It’s only a joke’. That’s dismissive behaviour. There’s no excuse to avoid the topic of racism now, or to not know what’s happening in Ireland. We still have such a long way to go.
Read Part 2 of 100 Voices: #AllAgainstRacism in the current issue of Hot Press:
Special thanks to the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission for their support in this project.