Pre and postnatal depression
support services

0121 301 5990
Click here to view and share our new multilingual short films Acacia Family Support - Ante and postnatal depression support services

Help for Professionals Working With Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic Families, and People of Colour

Welcome to Acacia's dedicated section for professionals working with mums and dads from black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) backgrounds.  Here we have tried to pull together some resources and information to help you.  Please click links to find BAME specific video's, information and free downloadable stuff.

PND in BAME mothers is around 13% higher than others because of additional factors related to culture and ethnicity.  Despite this fact fewer than expected BAME mothers receive diagnosis or treatment for maternal mental health issues. The additional factors affecting BAME parents can include:

• Unaware of healthcare support a mother could receive
• Lack of support of where to go
• Family expectations and responsibilities
• Differences in child rearing practices
• Language barriers
• Unemployed
• Caring for others in the family (elderly, partner’s parents)
• Traditions and cultural barriers
• Stigma attached to mental health
  And there could be many more

It is important to understand that different cultures have many different beliefs and practices, and we need to try to understand these and to maintain a person centred and flexible approach to care.  This is vitally important to ensure that BAME mothers receive proper and timely support.  Acacia is committed to breaking down and reducing the barriers which exist in our own service and in the wider perinatal mental health sector.

It is also important to say that although it is a convenient acronym, grouping people of colour together with terms such as BAME can sometimes give the impression that we are lumping large numbers of people together as a single entity.  We use this acronym for convenience but recognise that this carries an inherent risk which we must remain aware of, that the humanity, the complexity, the experiences and identities of people can get swallowed up in a four letter acronym.   We recognise that different families/communities/cultures are made up of individuals and we must continue to resist ascribing pre-conceived ideas and approaches based purely on their racial/cultural grouping.

Please click on any of the links below to find multilingual video's, information and other free downloadable resources to help you support people of colour/BAME.  Please remember that the use of these resources is not intended to be a substitute for a consultation with a healthcare provider/professional and it must not be automatically assumed that Acacia Family Support endorses any or all of the providers and/or services in this list.  

f you have any questions please call 0121 301 5990 or click here to email us

View our pages in different languages using Google Translate
To view these pages in your preferred language click here to visit Google Translate and log in.   Then all you need to do is cut and paste our website name  in the little blue box and click on the blue arrow.    This will re-open our page with the Google Translate toolbar at the top of the page where you can click on the language and change it to the one you prefer.

Acacia Secure Online Referral Form for Birmingham Families
If you would like to make a referral to Acacia please click on the Agency Referral button below to access our secure online referral form

Agency Referral
Local Support for Families Outside of Birmingham
If you live outside of Birmingham please click here to go to the Hearts and Minds map of local support groups around the country.  All you need to do is put in your postcode and the map will show you what's available locally to you.  Unfortunately the page is only currently available in English.
6 New Multilingual PNMH Awareness Raising Films
At Acacia, we are committed to making sure that all mothers receive equitable access to excellent perinatal mental health support services and information.  To help with this, we have produced a series of short multilingual films, each in a different language: Punjabi, Mirpuri, Urdu, Gujarati, Slovakian and Dari. Each film aims to raise awareness of perinatal mental health issues in a culturally appropriate way and explain how to seek help.

We are hoping that these films are dissemintated far and wide in the UK and this is only the beginning.  More films/languages will be added as funding allows.  Click here for more information and to view the films.

Perinatal Positivity - short perinatal health awareness raising films in many languages.
Please scroll down to the bottom of the page to view the Bengali, Arabic, Urdu and English versions of this great short awareness raising film.

Also, you can use these links to access the film with the following other translations:
( Tigriniya??) ( Spanish) ( Gujrati) ( Pashto) ( Somali) ( Lithuanian) ( mandarin) ( Albanian) ( Punjabi) ( hindi) ( Turkish) ( Romanian) ( Farsi)  ( French) ( Portuguese)
Covid advice for pregnant mums and other vulnerable family members in various languages
Below are some links for up to date information and video's on Covid-19 available in various different languages.  

Click on the links below, then scroll down to find the language you're looking for:


Coronavirus guides in various languages from Birmingham Women's Hospital
We understand that mums will be worried about the physical impact of coronavirus on their pregnancy and baby. These leaflets aim to provide information about coronavirus, pregnancy care and changes Birmingham Women's Hospital have made to maternity services during the coronavirus outbreak to keep mums and babies safe.

Please click on the links below to download the free information in various languages.

ver=4597 – English
ver=4567 – Arabic
ver=4568 – Bengali
ver=4569 – Urdu
ver=4570 – Somalian
Spark's extensive resource directory for people of colour
Spark and Co. is a Community Interest Company that supports people of colour in the UK by providing information, education & opportunity.  Their goal is to tackle inequalities exacerbated by Covid-19 by equipping people with knowledge, information & resources which are appropriate for their individual needs accross a very broad range of subjects including health and social.  Click on the link below and enter basic details to narrow the search to find what culturally appropriate services are available to each individual/family in the area they live.

Click here to access Spark's resource page.
Raham Project
A group for mothers and their partners of ethnic minority backgrounds.  This group is dedicated to all things related to pregnancy, childbirth and the post birth period - with an emphasis on maintaining and improving mental wellbeing.  The group was created by a Peterbourough based midwife but the information is available to everyone wherever you live.

Visit their facebook page for video's and other information

Click here to vist the Facebook page

You can also follow the Raham Project on:   


Basic information sheets about PND in various languages
Please click on the links below to access two basic information sheets for BAME families in many languages which are available from Medline Plus. 

Emotional changes after birth
Postpartum depression (PND)

Both of these fact sheets provide very brief overview of some of the feelings and emotions a mum can face after giving birth.  The sheets both point out that if the feelings are severe and/or endure longer than a couple of weeks they may indicate a more serious problem.  

Examining Postnatal Depression Among African Women
In African cultures, motherhood is strived for and revered but that comes with added pressures. What happens to African women who have children but experience difficulties with motherhood?

Click here to visit site and read article
Medication information
Below you will find viewable and downloadable handy factsheets on the two most commonly used medicines for PND/Anxiety.  Please click on the link to open the factsheet.  These are written in easy to understand English.

For information sheets on other medications (written in English) which may be used during pregnancy or in the postnatal period please
click here to visit NHS24 and search for the factsheet you are looking for.

Alternatively, for mums who are currently pregnant you can also click here to visit Bumps and search for client information sheets on the use of most medications (written in English).

A range of printable medication information leaflets in many different languages are available by clicking here and then searching for the correct leaflet in your chosen language.
PHQ9 and GAD Forms in other languages
PHQ forms in various languages are available for download here

AD and some other PHQ forms can be selected and downloaded here
MORS (attachment) forms available in various languages
Mothers Object Relations Scales (MORS) - A core component of an attachment relationship between one person and another is the mental representation that each person has of the other’s feelings for them. A caregiver’s perception of their infant’s/child’s thoughts, feelings and intentions towards them builds this internal representation as an ‘object’ in the caregiver’s mind. This plays a large part in how the caregiver behaves and interacts, with consequences for the development of the infant/child.

The Mothers Object Relations Scales provide a validated and easy-to-use way of assessing the representation as part of screening in primary care, in making treatment decisions and monitoring response, and in research in perinatal mental health and early child development. It is being used extensively in primary and secondary perinatal mental health services in UK and more widely.

MORS comes in two versions  MORS-SF (short-form)
A 14-item questionnaire for use with caregivers of infants. An equivalent, MORS-Child
For use with caregivers of children aged between 2 and 4 years.

Please click here to access/download the tool/form in various different languages including Arabic, Hindi, Russian and may others

Common themes within the pre and postnatal practices amongst different cultures:
When working with People of Colour/BAME families it is useful to be aware of the following common themes:

Organised Support

The idea around organised support, is for female family elder to provide care to the mother and baby, usually in the form of practical support (household duties). They may also advise the mother on how to care for their newborn.

Rest Periods

Organised support and rest periods can be seen to correspond together and during the rest period a mother would be restricted in performing her usual duties, which can span between 21 days to 5 weeks. In many cultures, certain diets are also followed to prevent ill health.

Prescribed foods

Certain foods are believed to carry certain properties during the postnatal phase. For instance, in some cultures hot foods (i.e. those high in protein) such as milk, ghee, nuts are all thought to help regain balance after giving birth along with a salty and acidic diet. However cold foods such as yogurt and cold water will be avoided as it is thought to be associated with body pain. Contrastingly, in other cultures salty foods are avoided as it is thought to be associated with lower back pain. A high protein diet (hot food) is recommended throughout most Eastern Asian cultures.

Hygiene Practices

In some cultures, postpartum women are seen as contaminated and therefore would need to follow hygiene and warmth practices. For instance, some women may take a bath ‘ghusl’ after they have stopped bleeding and in some cultures cold baths are prohibited as it is believed to cause fevers and infection.

Infant care & breastfeeding

There can also be specific practices related to breastfeeding. Some religious and cultural practices only allow women to initiate breastfeeding after the 2nd day or the 6th day after a naming ceremony, and others may wait up to three days postpartum. For some, breastfeeding is a religious and holy practice.  

Cultural Humility

We don't need to be cultural experts to provide culturally safe and effective care.  If we approach each individual from an attitude of cultural humility and curiosity, taking the time, being open, willing to ask questions and listen, we are able to effectively remove barriers and build better therapeutic relationships with ethnically diverse clients.
Acacia Black Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) Project
This project was originally launched in May 2017 and was initially funded by The Big Lottery.  

Birmingham is a diverse ethnic community and the aim of this project is to:

Raise awareness of perinatal mental health in BAME communities
Develop BAME specific awareness raising resources
Promote access and awareness of PIMH services for mothers within the BAME communities
Advocate for vulnerable/marginalised groups in the perinatal sector
Provide training for services and organisations which support BAME groups to have an increased knowledge to address PND
Develop training & resources for BAME groups
Provide volunteer training and cultural awareness

As the project has progressed we have broadened our geographical focus so that our awareness raising, resources and training become more generic and available more widely to support the development of BAME focussed perinatal services and communities accross the country.

Why focus on people of colour?

  • In general, these communities are more likely to have poorer health outcomes and access to mental health support.
  • Higher prevalence of anxiety among South Asian women, and psychotic disorders in Afro-Caribbean men compared with White British population (general mental health issues).
  • Prevalence of PND in BAME is 13% higher because of additional factors making them a priority for service improvement.
  • Improvements in engagement and appropriateness of services are vital for ethnic groups who face additional cultural and  linguistic barriers.
  • NICE guidelines suggests there needs to be more culturally appropriate information and support for these women.

As stated at the top of the page, although we use the BAME acronym for convenience  we recognise that it can't possibly convey the diversity which exists amongst people of colour.   Different families/communities/cultures are made up of individuals and we must continue to resist ascribing pre-conceived ideas and approaches based purely on their racial/cultural grouping.

Acacia's Printed Leaflets
Acacia produces two leaflets specifically aimed at BAME groups.  They can be downloaded below.  We also produce hard copies.  If you would like to obtain any of our leaflets or booklets please get in touch.  Please note that for larger quantities we may need to make a charge.
General Acacia Resources
Click on this link below to go to Acacia's general help and support resources page (all resources are in English)

Evidence based parenting courses for Muslim families
Approachable Parenting offers a variety of services, including recognized evidence based parenting courses, for the needs of Muslim families.  Click here to visit the website.

Click here for Approachable Parenting's Facebook page.
Bethel Doula Service for vulnerable and isolated pregnant women

The Bethel Doula service provides support to vulnerable and isolated pregnant women in Birmingham during their pregnancies, their childbirth and after their babies have been born. Our staff and team of experienced Senior Doulas and Volunteer Doulas help service users by:
  • meeting with and listening to each new service user to assess their needs
  • being a supportive and friendly birth partner
  • helping women to attend medical appointments
  • arranging essentials such as baby clothes, nappies and Moses baskets
  • providing breast feeding support
  • hosting a weekly Mother & Baby group
  • running a fortnightly Parent Education & Health class
  • providing friendly emotional and practical support
  • helping to access other local support services

For more information click on this link:
or ring 0121 306 0111

W Mids Forced Marriage and Honour Based Abuse Multi Lingual 24 Hr Helpline
A new 24 hour multi lingual support line developed loacally for Birmingham and West Midlands based communities. The helpline is delivered by staff who are able to speak in the main South Asian languages.  Professionals, victims and survivors can all call for support. 

If you are worried about yourself, or are concerned about someone you know being at risk of forced marriage or honour based abuse, the multi lingual helpline is here to help. Offering confidential, empathic, non-judgemental emotional and practical support over the phone.   You can call 24 hours, day or night.  To discuss options, access immediate emergency refuge, or simply ask questions or tell us how you are feeling please ring 0800 953 9777.  

Click on the link below for the flyer:
Bharosa culturally appropriate domestic abuse support
Bharosa is a domestic abuse service for ethnic minority women (particularly those from a South Asian background) living in Birmingham.We provide a free service which is confidential and unbiased for women and young girls over the age of 16, who are experiencing any form of domestic abuse.  The service we provide is culturally appropriate and sensitive to the needs of the women that we support, and in a range of cultural languages.You can contact Bharosa yourself, or you can ask for an organisation or individual, such as a social care worker, doctor, health visitor, or family friend to contact us on your behalf.You can also contact us by completing the referral form and emailing it to us.Contact usWe are available from 9am to 5pm Monday to Thursday and 9am to 4 pm on Fridays.
Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic Parents and Perinatal Mental Health Svcs Conference Resources
It was really encouraging and exciting to see so many attendees and such a diverse cross section of PMH professionals meeting together to face the challenge head on.  As promised we've uploaded the presenters slides from the day and also the three reports our Ops Director referred to in his talk.  Please feel free to download and make use of these free resources.

Perinatal Mental Health Videos

Perinatal Positivity in Arabic
Perinatal Positivity in Urdu
Shabina's Story
Joshna's Story
Perinatal Positivity

If you live in Birmingham and need help?

Need Help? If you need help or support or have any questions please call.
0121 301 5990
or click here to email us

If you live outside of Birmingham and need help?

View the website If you need help or support please visit the Hearts and Minds website.