Pre and postnatal depression
support services

0121 301 5990
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.

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

If you are looking for support for your client visit our multi lingual pages
In an effort to reduce barriers for mums who speak English only as second, third or fourth languages, our Mums and Dads BAME page now has translation built in.  Please click on the BAME menu tab above and choose 'Mums/Dads' to  visit the multi lingual page and select the language you are looking for by clicking on the corresponding link (in red in the second section).  If you don't see the link for the language you are looking for click any one of the language links then go to the GoogleTranslate drop down box on the taskbar and select the language you need.
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.
Coronavirus - Free guides in various languages from BWH
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. – English – Arabic – Bengali – Urdu – Somalian
Covid advice for pregnant mums and other vulnerable family members in various languages
Below are some links for up to date information on Covid-19 available in various different languages.  

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

Top tips to stay safe - short video's which you can show or send the link to help your clients.  The video's are avaiable in numerous languages and can be accessed by clicking on the link below:

EHSAAS Perinatal Support for Pakistani Women
The EHSAAS Project is for Pakistani women who require help and support accessing services during their pregnancy or beyond. Support can be provided and tailored to your needs. If you live in the surrounding areas of Hall Green, Hodge Hill, Perry Barr and Ladywood districts speak to us today.

We are culturally sensitive, speak the community language and understand barriers faced by Pakistani women. We provide tailored support through one-to-one help, sign-posting and peer support through our trained volunteers.

We aim to raise awareness and increase engagement of Pakistani women into perinatal services and mental health services. We aim to build a bridge between services.

Click on the links below for more information on referral pathways, contact details and referral form
Free Guide To Living With Worry And Anxiety Amidst Global Uncertainty
A free self-help guide, developed by Psychology Tools, dealing with anxiety and worry in relation to the current pandemic.  Available in many different languages.  Please click the link below and then scroll down the page to find the guide in the language you need for your client.  We apologise that there are still some languages still not covered.

Click here for the guide
Acacia Stay at Home Survival Guide
Acacia has developed a survival guide for all parents staying at home during the coronavirus outbreak.  It contains advice and lots of resources for themselves and their children.  Please click on the link below to download the free guide.  Unfortunately, this is only available in English.
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.
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
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.  

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 Forms in other languages
PHQ forms in various languages are available for download 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

Acacia Black Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) Project
This is project was originally launched in May 2017 and was initially funded by The Big Lottery, covering the whole of Birmingham.  

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

Raise awareness of perinatal mental health in BAME communities
Promote access and awareness of PIMH services for mothers within the BAME communities
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

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 that need addressing.
•Higher in ethnic groups who face additional cultural and linguistic barriers.
•In the last 2 years, Acacia has had an increase in referrals from BAME groups (14%).
•NICE guidelines suggests there needs to be more culturally appropriate information and support for these women.
•Acacia wishes to address this inequality.

This service provides information/awareness raising sessions and training for families, community groups, professionals and anyone else who would like to receive information/training regarding perinatal mental health and BAME.  We can provide anything from a short half hour session to full programs over several weeks.  If you would like to speak to someone about this please ring 0121 301 5990 or email

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.

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.  
Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic Parents and Perinatal Mental Health Svcs Conference Resources
Thanks to everyone who made our conference in January such a great success.  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.
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)

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:
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

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.

Perinatal Mental Health Information 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.