top of page

Bristol's 'Steppin Sistas' are going the extra mile to raise money for BAME Mental Health Charity

The walking group 'Steppin Sistas' in Bristol are doing a charity walk to raise money for the mental health charity Nilaari, which focuses on BAME mental health. The charity walk will take place between 1st-30th of September. The group is going to cover 30 miles within the 30 days.


Steppin Sistas are hoping to raise at least £200, but feel very confident that they will exceed this target. This money will be going to the mental health charity Nilaari, which has resonated with a lot of the members of the group.


Image credit: Ruth Pitter

Sophie Brown, the founder of Steppin Sistas, believes this was very important for a lot of the members of the group, she said:


"There are over 400 members of the group, there are a lot of women who have came from Nilaari who have used it for their mental health so it means a lot".


As Nilaari does a lot of important work for BAME communities in Bristol, the group felt it was important to give back to a charity that has done a lot for them.

(Image: L-R Sophie Brown & Thelma Hawthorne)




"We are really passionate about raising the benefits of talking therapies and we really want to encourage marginalised communities to consider mental health talking therapies". Jean Smith, Nilaari.

Thelma Hawthorne, a member of Steppin Sistas, believes that the charity Nilaari has done a lot for those in the local community, she said: "I think there is a strong connection in the community as there is a lot of access".


The charity Nilaari was very happy to hear about the work Steppin Sistas is doing. Director Jean Smith at Nilaari expressed her gratitude, she said:


"So honoured really, that they chose us for a charity because A, it’s a community organisation but B, it targets the community we work with". - Jean Smith


Mental health has been a very delicate issue, especially throughout the pandemic. But for those suffering with mental health who are from a BAME background, it can be more difficult to receive the correct treatment.

Although Sophie believes Nilaari is doing wonders for the local community, she believes that other mental health services/charities are not as well-versed


when dealing with patients who are from a BAME background. She said:


"I’ll be totally honest. I don’t think so and I think its to do with them not having any experience with BAME backgrounds and not understanding the culture. We can all help who we can help but you need to understand that culture to understand that and be able to support them".


With the money being raised for Nilaari, Jean Smith is hoping to invest in talking therapies, she said: "We are really passionate about raising the benefits of talking therapies and we really want to encourage marginalised communities to consider mental health talking therapies". Jean continued by saying: "Talking therapies is often not seen as an intervention for our communities".


bottom of page