Education, Programs and Services
NAMI Family Support Group: NAMI Family Support Group is a peer-led support group for family members, caregivers and loved ones of individuals living with mental illness.
NAMI Family Support Group will help you:
- See the individual first, not the illness
- Recognize that mental illnesses are medical illnesses that may have environmental triggers
- Understand that mental illnesses are traumatic events
- Aim for better coping skills
- Find strength in sharing experiences
- Reject stigma and not tolerate discrimination
- Not judge anyone’s pain
- Forgive ourselves and reject guilt
- Embrace humor as healthy
- Accept that we cannot solve every problem
- Work for a better future in a realistic way
- Meets on the 1st Saturday of the month
- For more details: Family Support Group
The NAMI Family-to-Family Education Program is a free, 12-week course for family caregivers of individuals with severe mental illnesses.
What does the course include?
- Current information about schizophrenia, major depression, bipolar disorder (manic depression), panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, borderline personality disorder, and co-occurring brain disorders and addictive disorders
- Up-to-date information about medications, side effects, and strategies for medication adherence
- Current research related to the biology of brain disorders and the evidence-based, most effective treatments to promote recovery
- Gaining empathy by understanding the subjective, lived experience of a person with mental illness
- Learning in special workshops for problem solving, listening, and communication techniques
- Acquiring strategies for handling crises and relapse
- Focusing on care for the caregiver: coping with worry, stress, and emotional overload
- Guidance on locating appropriate supports and services within the community
- Information on advocacy initiatives designed to improve and expand services.
- For more details: Family to Family
NAMI Basics: a free, 6-week education program for parents and family caregivers of children and teens who are experiencing symptoms of a mental illness or whom have already been diagnosed. For more details: NAMI Basics
NAMI Peer-to-Peer: a free, 10-session educational program for adults with mental illness who are looking to better understand their condition and journey toward recovery. For more details: Peer-to-Peer
NAMI Peer-to-Peer helps you:
- Create a personalized relapse prevention plan
- Learn how to interact with health care providers
- Develop confidence for making decisions and reducing stress
- Stay up-to-date on mental health research
- Understand the impact of symptoms on your life
- Access practical resources on how to maintain your journey toward recovery
NAMI Connection Recovery Support Group
NAMI Connection is a weekly recovery support group for people living with mental illness in which people learn from each others’ experiences, share coping strategies, and offer each other encouragement and understanding.
NAMI In Our Own Voice:
presentations change attitudes, assumptions and stereotypes about people with mental health conditions. For more details: In Our Own Voice
NAMI FaithNet: an information exchange network of NAMI members, friends, clergy and congregations of all faith traditions who wish to create more welcoming and supportive faith communities for persons and families touched by serious mental illness. For more details: FaithNet
NAMI Hearts & Minds: an online, interactive, educational initiative promoting the idea of wellness in both mind and body. Wellness is an ongoing process of learning how to make choices that support a more successful, healthy life. For more details: Hearts and Minds
Mental Health First Aid
Mental Health First Aid is a groundbreaking public education program that helps the public identify, understand, and respond to signs of mental illnesses and substance use disorders. Mental Health First Aid USA is managed, operated, and disseminated by three national authorities — the National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare, the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, and the Missouri Department of Mental Health.
Mental Health First Aid is offered in the form of an interactive 12-hour course that presents an overview of mental illness and substance use disorders in the U.S. and introduces participants to risk factors and warning signs of mental health problems, builds understanding of their impact, and overviews common treatments. Those who take the 12-hour course to certify as Mental Health First Aiders learn a 5-step action plan encompassing the skills, resources and knowledge to help an individual in crisis connect with appropriate professional, peer, social, and self-help care.
What is NAMI Provider Education?
The NAMI Provider Education Program is a 5-week course that presents a penetrating, subjective view of family and consumer experiences with serious mental illness to line staff at public agencies who work directly with people experiencing severe and persistent mental illnesses.
The course helps providers realize the hardships that families and consumers face and appreciate the courage and persistence it takes to live with and recover from mental illness.
How is the Provider Education course unique?
The Provider Course emphasizes the involvement of consumers and family members as faculty in provider-staff training. The teaching team consists of five people:
- Two family members trained as Family-to-Family Education Program teachers;
- Two consumers who are knowledgeable about their own mental illness, have a supportive relationship with their families, and are dedicated to the process of recovery; and
- A mental health professional who is also a family member or consumer.
Few teaching programs employ consumers in this kind of sustained training effort in which they are paid to participate on a teaching team as they present a 5-week course.
The course reflects a new knowledge base — the “lived experiences” of people coping with a mental illness or caring for someone who lives with a mental illness. Including this deeply personal perspective creates an appreciable difference in the program’s content. It adds a means of teaching the emotional aspects and practical consequences of these illnesses to the academic medical information in the course.
Crisis Intervention Training
NAMI partner programs like Army One Source and Make the Connection provide much-needed help for veterans and for those who treat them and their families.
NAMI on Campus
NAMI on Campus provides information and resources to support students living with mental health conditions and to empower them to take action on their campuses. This site also includes materials to help colleges in improving the academic and social experience of their students by addressing the mental health needs of all students.