Men of Color Health Awareness (MOCHA) is an organization working to promote the health and well-being of men, their families, and communities. MOCHA provides a safe space for men to bond, support each other, and organize for social justice. Enabling men to learn strategies to improve mental and emotional health while engaging them in chronic disease self-management and exercise through peer-led activities.
Much of MOCHA's current work is in partnership with University of Massachusetts Amherst School of Public Health and a National Institute of Minority Health and Health Disparities research grant. Researchers in concert with the MOCHA team will be measuring the effectiveness of MOCHA's curriculum and programming to reduce stress, BMI and blood pressure among African American men. Over the last year, MOCHA has developed and pilot tested new curriculum and will be collecting data from over 200 men.
MOCHA is also a Baystate Health Better Together grantee. The partnership with Baystate and the Hampden County Sherriff's Office has allowed MOCHA to teach the MOCHA curriculum to men presently incarcerated in the Ludlow Jail. In its brief life span, the program has shown positive outcomes. As men who have participated in the curriculum are released, they are contacting MOCHA. This enables MOCHA to connect the recently released men to much needed series in the community.