Columbia University in the City of New York

Mental health programs for West Harlem

A specially designed community Wellness Center on the ground floor of the Greene Science Center provides health resources to serve area residents. Physicians from Columbia University Medical Center host community-based initiatives that train members of the Harlem community and beyond to become health advocates to prevent stroke and promote mental health. The center also provides free cholesterol and blood pressure screenings.

The Wellness Center is a home base to Mental Health First Aid (MHFA), a program dedicated to improving access to quality mental health in Harlem. African Americans and Latinos have the lowest rates of mental health treatment in the United States. To address this disparity, MHFA works with local faith communities, training leaders to identify and respond to signs of depression and other mental illnesses, as well as substance-use disorders like alcoholism. Sidney Hankerson, MD, assistant professor of clinical psychiatry at Columbia University, College of Physicians & Surgeons and the New York State Psychiatric Institute, directs MHFA trainings through the Wellness Center. His team teaches people to combat the stigma often associated with mental health problems and encourages others to seek medical help. MHFA also provides mental health resources (such as a list of local clinics) onsite at the Wellness Center for the community.

For more information, visit the Community Coalition for Mental Health.

Please note that the Wellness Center is not a clinical practice.


News October 11, 2016

Community Wellness Center to Open at Manhattanville

Columbia University President Lee C. Bollinger today announced that two Columbia University Medical Center doctors will lead a new community Wellness Center.

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Videos Featuring Mental Health First Aid

Writing a New Story Together: Confronting Mental Health Disparities with Community Partnerships

This lecture highlights an innovative, community-focused approach to delivering mental health services led by Dr. Sidney Hankerson.



Learn more about Columbia's Community Wellness Center

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