We had the good fortune of connecting with Daniqua Williams and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Daniqua, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
After Hurricane Dorian tragically hit The Bahamas in 2019, Bahamians were left traumatized and suffering from mental anguish. As a native Bahamian, I quickly realized that we don’t facilities to provide easily accessible mental health care especially on the islands of Grand Bahama and Abaco. There were crisis interventions going on but what happens when those community organizations leave the island? I decided to start an online mental health private practice to meet this need. During this time, the topic of mental healthcare was still taboo in The Bahamas. Free Your Mind Counseling Services was created to destigmatize therapy. Our core belief is that mental wellness can be achieved by transformation of the mind. By breaking the stigma against mental health, we can achieve mental wellness. My targeted audience are young black women because there are so many unique challenges we face due to the intersectionality of race and gender.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
In my professional life, I wear many hats, I am a Mental Health Therapist and a Student Affairs Professional. I hold a Masters in Counseling and I will hold an Ed.D in Educational Leadership: Higher Education in August 2022. It was not easy to achieve those degrees as an international student. I was met with a lot of challenges such as acculturation, homesickness, and discrimination. I leaned on my support system who reminded me of my reasons why I decided to embark on this journey. The key lesson that I’ve learned is nothing will happen before its time. I want to world to know that my story is a lesson on resilience and how to walk by faith and not by sight.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I love the Midtown/ Wynwood area! We would definitely go to brunch at Tap 42 in Midtown to listen to Dancehall and Reggae while sipping bottomless mimosas! The salty donut is where I go for a snack while walking around Wynwood and enjoying the art murals. I love going to the Heat games and strolling around on Bayside. Prime 112 is my all time favorite steakhouse. A trip to Miami wouldn’t be complete without an outing to Sugar Factory in South Beach.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My late grandmother, Mama, instilled in me to know the power of my worth and to not let anyone take that away from me. My mother, Florence, always supported me and empowered me to follow my dreams no matter how crazy it sounds. My mentor, Vernon Smith, has taken the time to pour into me during my academic journey to ensure I strive to be an overachiever. My stepfather, Reginald, taught me the power of hard work and how to take care of myself while showing up for others. My amazing boyfriend, Justin, has always been a strong support and my anchor when times are weary.

Website: https://freeyourmindcounseling.com/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/freeyourmind_counseling/

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/daniqua-williams/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/FreeYourMindCS

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/freeyourmindcounseling/

Other: https://bit.ly/startyourhealing

Image Credits
Virgil David Photography, Dr. Kristina Lacey

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutMiami is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.