Undaunted: minority mental health activism and archives


  • Black Cultural Archives, United Kingdom

Project summary

The project has three central activities.

One: Access. Cataloguing the papers of Melba Wilson OBE (fl. 1965-2010). Wilson’s career included leading national and regional mental health programmes, policy units and services, specifically with a focus on minority ethnicity people.

Two: New descriptive practice. The cataloguing of Wilson’s papers will be used as a springboard into new approaches around cataloguing and dissemination of archival sources.

Three: Collections development. Scoping hidden histories of activism in the intersection of race and mental health, including the histories/ archives of organisations such as Ipamo (1995-1998) a Lambeth based Black mental health initiative, and the Afiya Trust (founded 1997) a national charity that works to reduce inequalities in health and social care provision.

Supporting these three strands is our collaborative studentship with the University of Roehampton, and a programme of public engagement to disseminate the outputs of the project and to ensure a wider impact of the project outcomes.

The key outcomes of the project are:

Enhancing the resources available in this field of research.

Creating new opportunities for discursive research.

Making a lasting change to the availability and range of minority mental health archive collections.

Innovating in the field of archival practice.