Community//

Social Impact Heroes: How Jasmin Pierre is helping to erase the stigma of mental health issues within the black community

My success ensures that more people in the black community are aware of how mental health issues impact them. I feel that is bringing goodness to the world by helping my community become unashamed about their mental health. I feel the greatest form of success is when someone from my community says The Safe Place […]


My success ensures that more people in the black community are aware of how mental health issues impact them. I feel that is bringing goodness to the world by helping my community become unashamed about their mental health. I feel the greatest form of success is when someone from my community says The Safe Place app helped to save their life.


As a part of my series about strong female leaders, I had the pleasure of interviewing Jasmin Pierre. Jasmin is the Creator and CEO of ‘The Safe Place’, a free minority mental health app that is currently helping to erase the stigma of mental health issues within the black community.


Thank you so much for doing this with us Jasmin! Can you tell us a story about what brought you to this specific career path?

Lived experience with mental health issues brought me to the path I’m on now. I have major depressive disorder, anxiety, and I’m also a suicide survivor. I was never taught about mental health issues growing up in my community, so I just want the generations after me to have a better understanding of mental health, and to be able to realize that being black does not exempt us from going through mental health issues.

Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you began leading your company?

The most interesting story I have is going to Google headquarters in Austin, Texas this year for an event called the Titan Generator. I spoke about The Safe Place app in front of other entrepreneurs of color and some investors. A couple of months later I received a 1k grant From Google, for The Safe Place app.

Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?

My funniest mistake was thinking I was suppose to have everything figured out. When you run a business you’re going to make mistakes, and that’s okay.

What do you think makes your company stand out? Can you share a story?

What makes my company stand out is the fact that it’s about mental health issues within the black community. Mental Illness is not a very popular topic within any community to be honest, but it’s even worse in the black community. Many black people feel that mental health issues are just a white persons disease.

My mental health issues started in my youth, but I had no idea because I was never taught about them. I was taught that black people have to be strong and just pray. Having that mentality nearly killed me.

When I finally came to terms with my mental health issues, I wanted other’s in my community to feel they have the freedom to do the same. I also wanted my community to learn more about how mental health issues impact us. So I decided to create ‘The Safe Place’ app.

Are you working on any exciting new projects now? How do you think that will help people?

I’m working on a taskforce with the Congressional Black Caucus, and the office of Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman. The CBC task force I’m working with is helping to bring awareness to the rising number of suicides in black youth. I’ll be flying up to Washington D.C. soon to speak in front of the Congressional Black Caucus about how media and technology can impact the minds of black youth. I’ll also be talking to them about how ‘The Safe Place’ app is a form of technology that can impact black youth and their parents in healthy ways.

What advice would you give to other female leaders to help their team to thrive?

Listen to what your team has to say, trust them, and have patience.

What advice would you give to other female leaders about the best way to manage a large team?

Find the balance. Larger teams can be hectic at times, and finding balance is so necessary for things to come together.

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?

My dad has helped me a great deal and he is my biggest supporter. He has been with me on some of my darkest days of depression and he supports my app and mental health advocacy fully. I feel it’s beautiful to have that kind of love and support.

How have you used your success to bring goodness to the world?

My success ensures that more people in the black community are aware of how mental health issues impact them. I feel that is bringing goodness to the world by helping my community become unashamed about their mental health. I feel the greatest form of success is when someone from my community says The Safe Place app helped to save their life.

What are your “5 Leadership Lessons I Learned From My Experience” and why. (Please share a story or example for each.)

  1. Have passion. I have a lot of passion for advocating about mental health rights, and it’s because I really care about the way mental health issues are impacting us. I also have lived experience because I have major depressive disorder, anxiety, and I’m a suicide survivor. So that really adds fuel to my passion. I feel true leadership comes with passion behind the thing you’re fighting for.
  2. Never Be Afraid To Stand Out. I use to be afraid of being seen and sometimes I still struggle with it. I use to try blending in with the crowd, because standing out and being your own person is harder at times, but to me that is what it takes to have true leadership.
  3. Take breaks. Leaders are always busy taking care of others. By doing that you can totally neglect your self care. I’ve been there and it’s not healthy at all.
  4. Be Authentic. Being yourself can go such a long way and it will help you to know what you want and don’t want out of life. I’ve learned that being authentic to who you are is a necessary key in your journey.
  5. Have Faith. I feel when you’re a leader having faith is extremely important. If you don’t have faith in what you’re wanting to accomplish, how can others have faith in you and your leadership?

You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂

That’s a good question. I think my answer would be a movement dealing with more affordable healthcare for minorities and underprivileged families.

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?

A good friend of mine named Teddy always tells me to “keep flowing with the river” when things get rough, and basically that means rivers have all different kinds of currents, they can be rough, smooth, slow, fast, etc. You just have to keep flowing until you reach the next current. Eventually things will smooth out and be peaceful again, but you just have to keep flowing forward to eventually experience it.

Some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US with whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this if we tag them

I would love to sit down with a representative from TED to speak about me doing a TED Talk on why addressing mental health resources for minorities are so important in this day and age.

I would also love to speak to a representative from Essence Festival, to talk about how we can have The Safe Place app incorporated into the wellness events for the black community during Essence Festival next year in the convention center in New Orleans, La. Essence is always in July and that happens to be Minority mental health month, I also happen to be a New Orleans Native.

I would also like to talk to any funders who are interested in investing in The Safe Place app to help the black community continue to have mental have resources ready and available to them.

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