Atlanta, Georgia (February 16, 2018) – NAMI Georgia’s heart goes out to the families of Stoneman Douglas High School, and the Parkland Communities. We are saddened by the tragic loss of life that could have been avoided. NAMI Georgia feels it is important to examine all factors that may have contributed to this tragedy before any assumptions are made.
NAMI Georgia wants to offer support to our communities in the form of NAMI education programs and presentations to ensure that the public receives the support they need and becomes better educated. Anyone in need of non-emergency support, please call the NAMI Georgia HelpLine at 770-408-0625. Any person feeling they are experiencing a mental health crisis can call the Georgia Crisis & Access Line at 1-800-715-4225 available 24/7.
NAMI Georgia along with 18 community affiliates across the state offer many programs in the form of education classes, support groups, and presentations. The following classes are geared toward supporting our schools, children, youth and young adults:
NAMI PARENTS & TEACHERS AS ALLIES
A presentation for teachers and other school personnel to raise their awareness about mental health conditions and help them recognize the early warning signs and the importance of early intervention. Empowering teachers and school personnel to make a lasting difference in the lives of their students, NAMI Parents & Teachers as Allies (PTA) opens the door for schools to make a difference. Our free, on-site presentation is led by a team from your community consisting of a young adult with a mental health condition, a parent and/or a teacher.
Our PTA program will share how to:
- Understand the difference between “bad behavior” and symptoms of a mental health condition
- Recognize early warning signs
- Communicate and partner with families effectively
- Link to community services quickly
- Create a supportive learning environment for all students
ENDING THE SILENCE
Through this free classroom presentation, students get to see the reality of living with a mental health condition. During the 50-minute presentation, a young adult living with mental illness and a family member tell their stories about mental health challenges, including what hurt and what helped. Helping middle and high school students understand mental illness makes a significant difference. We can teach them about the warning signs for themselves and their friends. NAMI Ending the Silence helps raise awareness and change perceptions around mental health conditions.
NAMI Ending the Silence covers:
- Early warning signs
- Specifics about conditions
- When, where and how to get help for themselves or their friends
- When it’s not okay to keep a secret
YOUTH IN CRISIS (CIT-Y)
The Georgia Youth in Crisis (YIC), previously known as CIT-Youth (CIT- Y), program will primarily train school resource officers, and local law enforcement. However, it will also be offered to educators, counselors, other school personnel, professionals and community agencies serving children and youth on issues that commonly lead to crisis in these populations. YIC will teach class participants basic information on the most common severely emotionally disturbed (SED) diagnosis of children and youth, contemporary issues that can lead to crisis, (i.e., social media, and cyber-bullying), how to identify children and youth in crisis and equip participants with skills to help them effectively intervene. The primary goal of YIC (CIT-Y) is to provide trained community professionals with skills and resources that will assist them in providing safe, healthy environments for children and youth, and refer their parents/caregivers to appropriate professionals/agencies for assistance specific to their child’s needs.
A free, 6-session education program for parents and family caregivers of children and teens who are experiencing symptoms of a mental health condition or who have already been diagnosed. NAMI Basics is offered in a group setting so participants can connect with other people face-to-face. Parents will learn the facts about mental health conditions and how best to support their child at home, at school and when they’re getting medical care. Last year, 99% of participants told us they would recommend the program to other parents. The course is taught by a trained team with lived experience. The 6-session program provides critical strategies for parents to take care of their child and learn the ropes of recovery. At NAMI Basics, we teach that the parents are not alone. Recovery is a journey, and there is hope. The group setting of NAMI Basics provides mutual support and shared positive impact—participants will experience compassion and reinforcement from people who understand the situation. Participants can also help others with their own experience.
NAMI Basics covers:
- Managing crises, solving problems and communicating effectively
- How to take care of yourself and handle stress
- Developing the confidence and stamina to support your child with compassion
- Advocating for your child’s rights at school and in health care settings
- Learning about current treatments, including evidence-based therapies, medications and side effects
- Gaining an overview of the public mental health care, school and juvenile justice systems
- Understanding the challenges and impact of mental health conditions on your entire family These programs work and save lives!
NAMI Georgia currently has over 18 affiliates/support groups around the state willing to assist in meeting Georgia’s unmet need of support for children, youth, young adults and their families. For more information on these classes or to schedule a class in your area please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information:
4120 Presidential Parkway, Suite 200
Atlanta, GA 30340
Kim H. Jones, Executive Director