The National Alliance on Mental Illness will sponsor the NAMI Family-to-Family Education Program specifically for families of people diagnosed with serious mental illness. The 12-session program starts Monday, March 13 from 6:30-9 p.m., at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation at 1301 Gladewood Drive in Blacksburg.
The course will cover information about schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, depression, panic disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, borderline personality disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder; coping skills such as handling crisis and relapse; basic information about medications; listening and communication skills; recovery and rehabilitation; and self-care to address worry and stress.
The curriculum has been written by an experienced family member mental health professional and the course will be taught by NAMI family member volunteers who have taken intensive training as course instructors. The co-teachers for the New River Valley area will be Chris and Margo Walter.
“This course is an incredible experience,” Margo said. “It balances basic education and skill-training with emotional support, coping strategies and empowerment. We hope families with relatives who have a serious mental illness will take advantage of this unique opportunity.”
The course is designed specifically for parents, siblings, spouses, teen-age and adult sons and daughters, partners and significant others who are caregivers of persons with severe and persistent mental illness. The course is not appropriate for individuals who themselves have a major mental illness.
The NAMI Family-to-Family course is free. For more information or to register, call Margo Walter at 230-0641 or Chris Walter at 230-0649 or email: email@example.com.