NAMI Tallahassee is a very active all-volunteer organization. A dedicated and experienced Board of Directors leads the way for a membership primarily consisting of people who have either been affected by mental illness themselves or have family or friends who have experienced mental illness.
NAMI Tallahassee is the local affiliate of NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) serving Leon and surrounding counties. Founded in 1979, NAMI has become the nation’s leading voice on mental illness. NAMI includes over 1,200 affiliates in every state who join together to meet the NAMI mission through support, advocacy, education, and research for people with mental illness, their families and friends.
NAMI Tallahassee sponsors several valuable ongoing programs for those affected by mental illness.
NAMI Basics is a free, six-session, peer-directed education program developed specifically for parents and other family caregivers of children and adolescents who have either been diagnosed with a mental illness or who are experiencing symptoms but have not yet been diagnosed. A separate series of the six sessions is available to professional caregivers.
NAMI Connection Peer Support Group meets weekly at 2626 Care Drive, located immediately behind Capital Regional Medical Center. Facilitated by trained peers who are living in recovery, NAMI Connection welcomes adults 18 years old or older who are living with mental health conditions. NAMI Connection meets from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. every Wednesday night.
NAMI Family Support Group meets three times every month:
- 1st Tuesdays at Capital Regional Medical Center, 3rd Floor classroom, 6:30 p.m.
- 2nd Tuesdays at St. John's Episcopal Church in the library, 7:00 p.m.
- 4th Tuesdays at the offices of WellCare in the Towne South Shopping Center on South Monroe Street, 6:30 p.m.
It is designed for families and friends, as well as individuals living with mental illness. The group is led by NAMI trained facilitators who strive to provide an atmosphere of mutual consideration, forbearance and protection --offering individuals the opportunity to learn from each others’ experiences, share coping strategies, encouragement, and understanding.
The NAMI Family-to-Family Education Program is a free 12-week course for family members and friends of individuals with mental illness. In May 2013, the course was added to the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) National Registry of Evidence Based Programs and Practices. It is also recognized by the American Psychiatric Association, said to "significantly" improve coping and problem-solving abilities of family members of individuals living with mental illness.
The course is taught by NAMI certified trainers in a confidential setting. All instruction and course materials are free for class participants. The curriculum provides current information about schizophrenia, major depression, bipolar disorder (manic depression), panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, borderline personality disorder, co-occurring brain disorders and addictive disorders. The series provides knowledge and skills that family members and friends need to cope better and worry less, while empowering them to navigate health care and political systems. Many family members describe the course as life - changing.
NAMI Ending the Silence is an in-school presentation designed to teach middle and high school students about the signs and symptoms of mental illness, how to recognize the early warning signs and the importance of acknowledging those warning signs.
Why it’s important:
- 1 in 5 kids experiences a mental health condition; only 20% of them actually get help
- About 50% of students ages 14+ with a mental health condition will drop out of school
- Suicide is the second-leading cause of death for 15-24 year olds
- The earlier the better: early identification and intervention provides better outcomes
NAMI In Our Own Voice is a presentation by two trained NAMI members who are living in recovery with a mental health condition. In Our Own Voice is intended for the entire community and is appropriate for business lunch-and-learns, civic club programs, and any other group who has an interest in learning more about mental illness and the recovery process.
Sharing Hope is an outreach effort to members of the African American and other cultural communities. Lack of information and misconceptions surrounding mental health issues prevent many members of these communities from getting the help and support they need. NAMI-Tallahassee has materials and volunteers available to provide information that can help increase mental health awareness in minority communities.
NAMI FaithNet is a presentation intended for all faith communities. FaithNet is presented by two NAMI members who offer information about NAMI and its signature programs to faith community members who may be struggling with mental health challenges or may be aware of members of the congregation who might benefit from the information. NAMI, a secular organization, recognizes that faith is often an important part of the recovery process.