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Our Signature Programs
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Trainings in NAMI Signature programs which allow local affiliates to bring programs to their communities.

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All NAMI members or those becoming a member may apply to attend State Training programs.

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All trainings are offered at no cost to participants.

 
 
 
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NAMI Family Support Group is a 60-90-minute weekly or monthly support group for family members, partners, and friends (age 18+) of people with mental health conditions. Available in Spanish: Grupo de Apoyo para Familiares de NAMI.

Attend or Host

Attend this Class


Who can take the course The course is open to any adult (18+) family member, partner or friend with a relative or loved one with a mental health condition, even if the condition is not diagnosed (including but not limited to: schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, major depression, borderline personality disorder, panic disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder and/or dual diagnosis). Find the NAMI Family to Family support group nearest to you.




Teach a NAMI Family-to-Family Class


Who can lead the course Any adult (18+) who has or had a family member with a mental health condition may apply to become a program leader. All potential leaders are screened to determine whether the opportunity is a good fit for them and for the organization. NAMI Family-to-Family program leaders attend an intensive training to become certified and must be members of NAMI. Bring a NAMI Signature program to a local affiliate in your community by registering for a state training. Click here to Register





About this Support Group

Support Group Model


NAMI’s flagship program, NAMI Family-to-Family was developed in 1991 by psychologist and family member Dr. Joyce Burland. The 12-session course offers insights into the impact mental health conditions have on the entire family. The curriculum helps family members of people with mental health conditions learn a wide range of biomedical information and understand how these conditions affect their loved ones. It combats stigma and promotes healing. Participants improve their self-care and communication skills, learn problem-solving techniques and how to better advocate for their family member. In 2013, the 5th Edition of NAMI Family-to-Family was launched following a review by Dr. Anand Pandya, Vice-Chair for Clinical Affairs and Associate Professor of Clinical Psychiatry at the University of Southern California Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neurosciences. This review ensured that the language and science was current and relevant to families. Additional reviewers were MaJose Carrasco, Director of NAMI’s Multicultural Action Center reviewing cultural competence, and Sita Diehl, Director of NAMI State Policy and Advocacy reviewing advocacy. In May 2013, NAMI Family-to-Family was listed on the National Registry of Evidence-Based Programs and Practices (NREPP), a directory of evidence-based programs (EBP) maintained by SAMHSA (the Substance Abuse Mental Health Services Administration). Scientific evaluation showed that course participants had improved family empowerment, family functioning, engagement in self-care activities, mental health knowledge and emotional acceptance as a form of coping (Psychiatric Services in Advance doi: 10.1176/appi.ps.201500519). In 2015, NAMI and the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) signed a 3-year extension of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) effective through 2018. The MOU expands NAMI’s national partnership with the VHA to provide education programs to military and Veteran families as part of the VHA continuum of care. The current MOU promotes collaboration between NAMI and the VHA to offer both NAMI Homefront and NAMI Family-to-Family classes at VHA facilities (space permitting) or in community settings with families referred by the VHA. To date, 46 NAMI State Organizations have completed 400+ classes that have been offered at 110 VHA facilities across the U.S. In the U.S. and Mexico, De Familia a Familia de NAMI has been a life-changing experience for thousands of Spanish-speaking family members. De Familia a Familia de NAMI is offered in several states. All references to NAMI Family-to-Family include De Familia a Familia de NAMI, unless noted otherwise. Goals of the course

  • Provide current information about mental health conditions and how they affect the brain
  • Provide material about treatment options, including evidence-based therapies, medications and side effects
  • Develop skills in effective communication, problem solving and crisis preparation
  • Promote self-care and stress management for the family member/caregiver
  • Share local, state and national mental health resources
Find out More on the NAMI National site





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NAMI Peer-to-Peer Recovery Education Program is for anyone who is experiencing or has experienced the challenges of a mental health condition.  Participants learn communication skills, strengthen relationships, balance changing health care needs, and better understand their mental health and recovery. It consists of 8 2-hour classes. Available in Spanish: De Persona a Persona de NAMI.

Attend or Host

Attend this presentation.


Who can participate NAMI In Our Own Voice is open to the public. If you would like to attend a NAMI In Our Own Voice presentation, contact your local NAMI Affiliate. If the presentation isn’t available, ask to bring it to your community.




Learn to give a NAMI In Our Own Voice Presentation


Who can present Any adult in recovery with a mental health condition may apply to be trained as a program leader for IOOV. All potential program leaders are screened to determine whether the opportunity is a good fit for the individual and for the organization. Prospective program leaders attend an intensive training to become certified and must be members of NAMI. Bring a NAMI Signature program to a local affiliate in your community by contacting your local NAMI Affiliate.





About this Support Group

Content and Goals


NAMI In Our Own Voice (IOOV) aims to change the attitudes, assumptions and stereotypes about people with mental health conditions. Developed in 1996 under the name “Living with Schizophrenia,” the program was modified in 2006 to include information on other conditions and the name was changed. The IOOV presentation includes personal testimony, a video, and discussion between the presenters and the audience. This is a one-time presentation that can range from 40 to 90 minutes, given by two trained program leaders. The program leaders humanize the misunderstood, highly stigmatized topic of mental health conditions by showing that it’s possible—and common—to live well with a mental health condition. NAMI In Our Own Voice has been available in Spanish as En Nuestra Propia Voz de NAMI since 2013. All references to NAMI In Our Own Voice include En Nuestra Propia Voz de NAMI unless noted otherwise. Presentation content Introduction What happened What helps What’s next The program leaders use the IOOV DVD at each interval to share their story and then engage the audience in a discussion on the topic. Through training, program leaders acquire facilitation skills that help them identify discussion points for a variety of audiences. Program leaders learn to customize their presentation for various audiences, including others experiencing mental health conditions, family members, health care providers, politicians and law enforcement, as well as general audiences. Goals of the presentation

  • Give audience members a chance to ask program leaders questions, allowing for a deeper understanding of mental health conditions
  • Dispel stereotypes and misconceptions
  • Audience members leave with an understanding that every person with a mental health condition can hope for a brighter future
  • Provide information on how to learn more about mental health and get involved with the mental health community
Find out more on the NAMI National site





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NAMI Connection Recovery Support Group is a 90-minute weekly or bi-weekly support group for people (age 18+) with mental health conditions. Available in Spanish: NAMI Conexión Grupo de Apoyo y Recuperación.

Attend or Host

Attend this Support Group


Who can participate NAMI Connection Recovery Support Groups welcome any adult (18+) with a mental health condition. Find the NAMI Connection support group nearest to you.




Learn to lead a Connection Recovery Support Group


Who can lead a group Any adult with a mental health condition who makes mental health and wellness a priority in their daily life can apply to become a NAMI Connection program leader. All potential program leaders are interviewed and screened to determine whether the opportunity is a good fit for the person and for the organization. Program leaders attend an intensive peer-led training to become certified and must be members of NAMI. All certified program leaders should commit to a minimum of one year of service with a co-leader. Bring a NAMI Signature program to a local affiliate in your community by registering for a state training. Click here to Register





About this Support Group

Support Group Model


NAMI Connection Recovery Support Group Program is a peer-led support group program for any adult (18+) with a mental health condition. NAMI Connection grew out of the NAMI Family Support Group model, which was developed in 1997 under the leadership of psychologist and family member Dr. Joyce Burland. Group meetings are held once a week, once every other week or monthly and last for 90 minutes. This program offers participants the support of peers who understand their point of view and celebrate their successes. Each group:

  • Meets weekly, every other week or monthly
  • Lasts 90 minutes
  • Is confidential
  • Does not recommend or endorse any medications or medical therapies
This support group model encourages full group participation and creates upbeat and constructive meetings. Program leaders have found the model easy to use because it successfully manages many problematic situations that often undermine the effectiveness of support groups. The NAMI Connection model has four structures—Structured Agenda, Group Guidelines, Principles of Support and Emotional Stages—and three group processes—Hot Potatoes, Group Wisdom and Problem Solving. Each structure and group process exists to remedy a particular set of negative dynamics that commonly occur in support groups. The model allows leaders to address many of the difficult questions that arise in a support group, including the following:
  • How do you guarantee that the meeting will start and stop on time?
  • How do you respond to disrespectful group members?
  • What’s the best way to deal with “hot potatoes”/difficult subjects?
  • What do you do when someone monopolizes the group’s time?
  • How do you help a group do its own work and not look for direction at every turn?
NAMI Connection groups are led by a team of program leaders who make mental health and wellness a priority in their daily lives. The program leaders offer encouragement and help the group gain insight from hearing the challenges and successes of others. Program leaders are trained to guide participants, not to instruct or provide therapy. Participants can share as much or as little personal information as they want. NAMI Connection groups add to, but do not replace, treatment plans created by individuals and their mental health care providers. NAMI Conexión was launched in 2010. All reference to NAMI Connection Recovery Support Group includes NAMI Conexión, unless noted otherwise. Goals of the support group
  • See the individual first, not the condition
  • Understand that mental health conditions are traumatic events
  • Aim for better coping skills
  • Find strength in sharing experiences
  • Not judge anyone’s pain
  • Provide a safe place for participants to share resources and experiences
  • Establish a sense of community
  • Encourage empathy among participants
  • Promote productive discussion so participants leave feeling better than when they came
Find out More on the NAMI National site





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NAMI In Our Own Voice Presentation is a 60-90-minute presentation for the general public. It uses personal stories to promote awareness of mental health conditions and of the possibility of recovery. Available in Spanish: En Nuestra Propia Voz de NAMI.

Attend or Host

Attend this presentation.


Who can participate NAMI In Our Own Voice is open to the public. If you would like to attend a NAMI In Our Own Voice presentation, contact your local NAMI Affiliate. If the presentation isn’t available, ask to bring it to your community.




Learn to give a NAMI In Our Own Voice Presentation


Who can present Any adult in recovery with a mental health condition may apply to be trained as a program leader for IOOV. All potential program leaders are screened to determine whether the opportunity is a good fit for the individual and for the organization. Prospective program leaders attend an intensive training to become certified and must be members of NAMI. Bring a NAMI Signature program to a local affiliate in your community by contacting your local NAMI Affiliate.





About this Support Group

Content and Goals


NAMI In Our Own Voice (IOOV) aims to change the attitudes, assumptions and stereotypes about people with mental health conditions. Developed in 1996 under the name “Living with Schizophrenia,” the program was modified in 2006 to include information on other conditions and the name was changed. The IOOV presentation includes personal testimony, a video, and discussion between the presenters and the audience. This is a one-time presentation that can range from 40 to 90 minutes, given by two trained program leaders. The program leaders humanize the misunderstood, highly stigmatized topic of mental health conditions by showing that it’s possible—and common—to live well with a mental health condition. NAMI In Our Own Voice has been available in Spanish as En Nuestra Propia Voz de NAMI since 2013. All references to NAMI In Our Own Voice include En Nuestra Propia Voz de NAMI unless noted otherwise. Presentation content Introduction What happened What helps What’s next The program leaders use the IOOV DVD at each interval to share their story and then engage the audience in a discussion on the topic. Through training, program leaders acquire facilitation skills that help them identify discussion points for a variety of audiences. Program leaders learn to customize their presentation for various audiences, including others experiencing mental health conditions, family members, health care providers, politicians and law enforcement, as well as general audiences. Goals of the presentation

  • Give audience members a chance to ask program leaders questions, allowing for a deeper understanding of mental health conditions
  • Dispel stereotypes and misconceptions
  • Audience members leave with an understanding that every person with a mental health condition can hope for a brighter future
  • Provide information on how to learn more about mental health and get involved with the mental health community
Find out more on the NAMI National site





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NAMI Provider Program is a staff development program for health care professionals who work directly with people with mental health conditions. The course aims to expand the participants’ compassion for clients and their families and to promote a collaborative model of care. The program has a 5-session course offering 12.5 hours of training. A 4-hour seminar option is also available.

Attend or Host

Attend this Class


Who can take the course NAMI Provider is for employees of health care organizations who work directly with people experiencing mental health conditions. This may include nurses, social workers, direct care workers, therapists, occupational therapists, secretaries and any other paid employees who interact with the individuals in their care. The course may be offered to a broad range of professionals, such as mobile crisis workers, guidance counselors, group home workers, peer specialists, public defenders, etc. Typically, psychiatrists are not included in the classes. Some NAMI organizations have started offering this class. If it isn’t already available, contact your local NAMI Affiliate about starting one.




Learn to Teach NAMI Provider


Who can lead the course Any adult in recovery with a mental health condition or family member of a person who experiences or has experienced mental health conditions may apply to become a NAMI Provider program leader. People who are already certified to lead another NAMI education program are ideal candidates to be trained for this program. All potential leaders are screened to determine whether the opportunity is a good fit for the person and for the organization. Prospective program leaders attend an intensive training to become certified and must be members of NAMI. Bring a NAMI Signature program to a local affiliate in your community by contacting your local affiliate.





About this Course

Support Group Model


The course is provided through collaboration between the NAMI Affiliate and a health care organization and typically offered at the organization’s location. Class members are expected to come to every class. The curriculum consists of short lectures, group discussions and group exercises. The course may be presented using a variety of schedules, depending on agency schedules and needs, including (but not limited to):

  • Once a week for 5 weeks
  • Once a day for a week
  • Three times the first week and 2 times the second week
  • Over a 2-day period (2 classes the first day/3 classes the second day or vice-versa)
  • There is also 4-hour seminar available that is based on the NAMI Provider curriculum.
The goals of the course
  • Expose health care staff to the emotional stages people affected by mental health conditions experience on the way to recovery
  • Help mental health staff gain a fresh understanding of and empathy for their clients’ lived experience, especially in treatment
  • Promote the concept of collaboration between clients, families and providers to achieve the best level of recovery possible
Find out More on the NAMI National Site





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NAMI Family-to-Family is a free eight-week course for family caregivers of individuals with mental illnesses. NAMI-trained family members teach the course and all materials are free for class participants. The curriculum focuses on schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, clinical depression, panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), and borderline personality disorder, with a new resource on post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The course discusses treatment for these illnesses and teaches the knowledge and skills that family members need to cope with the challenges of living with a relative with a mental illness.

Attend or Host

Attend this Class


Who can take the course The course is open to any adult (18+) family member, partner or friend with a relative or loved one with a mental health condition, even if the condition is not diagnosed (including but not limited to: schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, major depression, borderline personality disorder, panic disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder and/or dual diagnosis). Find the NAMI Family to Family support group nearest to you.




Teach a NAMI Family-to-Family Class


Who can lead the course Any adult (18+) who has or had a family member with a mental health condition may apply to become a program leader. All potential leaders are screened to determine whether the opportunity is a good fit for them and for the organization. NAMI Family-to-Family program leaders attend an intensive training to become certified and must be members of NAMI. Bring a NAMI Signature program to a local affiliate in your community by registering for a state training. Click here to Register





About this Support Group

Support Group Model


NAMI’s flagship program, NAMI Family-to-Family was developed in 1991 by psychologist and family member Dr. Joyce Burland. The 12-session course offers insights into the impact mental health conditions have on the entire family. The curriculum helps family members of people with mental health conditions learn a wide range of biomedical information and understand how these conditions affect their loved ones. It combats stigma and promotes healing. Participants improve their self-care and communication skills, learn problem-solving techniques and how to better advocate for their family member. In 2013, the 5th Edition of NAMI Family-to-Family was launched following a review by Dr. Anand Pandya, Vice-Chair for Clinical Affairs and Associate Professor of Clinical Psychiatry at the University of Southern California Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neurosciences. This review ensured that the language and science was current and relevant to families. Additional reviewers were MaJose Carrasco, Director of NAMI’s Multicultural Action Center reviewing cultural competence, and Sita Diehl, Director of NAMI State Policy and Advocacy reviewing advocacy. In May 2013, NAMI Family-to-Family was listed on the National Registry of Evidence-Based Programs and Practices (NREPP), a directory of evidence-based programs (EBP) maintained by SAMHSA (the Substance Abuse Mental Health Services Administration). Scientific evaluation showed that course participants had improved family empowerment, family functioning, engagement in self-care activities, mental health knowledge and emotional acceptance as a form of coping (Psychiatric Services in Advance doi: 10.1176/appi.ps.201500519). In 2015, NAMI and the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) signed a 3-year extension of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) effective through 2018. The MOU expands NAMI’s national partnership with the VHA to provide education programs to military and Veteran families as part of the VHA continuum of care. The current MOU promotes collaboration between NAMI and the VHA to offer both NAMI Homefront and NAMI Family-to-Family classes at VHA facilities (space permitting) or in community settings with families referred by the VHA. To date, 46 NAMI State Organizations have completed 400+ classes that have been offered at 110 VHA facilities across the U.S. In the U.S. and Mexico, De Familia a Familia de NAMI has been a life-changing experience for thousands of Spanish-speaking family members. De Familia a Familia de NAMI is offered in several states. All references to NAMI Family-to-Family include De Familia a Familia de NAMI, unless noted otherwise. Goals of the course

  • Provide current information about mental health conditions and how they affect the brain
  • Provide material about treatment options, including evidence-based therapies, medications and side effects
  • Develop skills in effective communication, problem solving and crisis preparation
  • Promote self-care and stress management for the family member/caregiver
  • Share local, state and national mental health resources
Find out More on the NAMI National site





NAMI Homefront Education Program is for families, partners and friends who provide care for Service Members/Veterans experiencing mental health symptoms. The course consists of 6 2-hour classes designed to help military/Veteran families understand mental health conditions and improve their ability to support their Service Member. NAMI Homefront is an adaptation of NAMI Family-to-Family. Available in-person and online.

Attend or Host

Attend NAMI Basics


Who can take the course Any adult who regularly cares for a youth (age 21 and younger) with a mental health condition may participate. The child doesn’t need to have an official diagnosis. Many types of people could benefit from NAMI Basics, such as:

  • Biological parents
  • Adoptive parents
  • Foster parents
  • Grandparents
  • Aunts and uncles
  • Other relatives/friends who are responsible for raising the child or who provide care on a routine, consistent basis
Find the NAMI Connection support group nearest to you.




Want to teach NAMI Basics?


Who can lead the course Any adult who has been a parent or primary family caregiver to a person who experienced symptoms of a mental health condition before the age of 13. The child doesn’t need to have been diagnosed before age 13, and it doesn’t matter how old they are now. All potential program leaders are screened to determine whether the opportunity is a good fit for them and for the NAMI State Organization (NSO) and NAMI Affiliate (NA). NAMI Basics program leaders participate in an intensive training to become certified and must be members of NAMI. Bring a NAMI Signature program to a local affiliate in your community by registering for a state training. Click here to Register





About this Support Group

Support Group Model


NAMI Basics is the national education program for parents and other family caregivers of children and adolescents experiencing mental health conditions. These caregivers face unique challenges, such as overcoming social stigma, managing complex family dynamics and navigating the school system. This program is an adaptation of the evidence-based program NAMI Family-to-Family and is an evidence-based program. NAMI Basics is designed to:

  • Give participants the information they need to be more effective caregivers
  • Help them cope with the traumatic impact mental health conditions have on their entire family
  • Provide them with tools that help them make the best decisions possible for their child’s care
  • Help them take care of their entire family—especially themselves
NAMI Basics includes 6 2.5-hour classes of instructional material, discussions and interactive exercises. NAMI Affiliates may offer the course weekly or on consecutive weekends to accommodate participants’ schedules. All reference to NAMI Basics includes Bases y Fundamentos de NAMI, unless specifically noted. Goals of the course
  • Develop a community of support
  • Provide practical, current information about mental health conditions
  • Provide tools to effectively advocate for the child within school and mental health systems
  • Develop problem-solving and communication skills
Find out More on the NAMI National site





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NAMI Basics Education Program is for parents, guardians and other family who provide care for youth with mental health symptoms. This course consists of 6 2.5-hour classes and is designed to help participants gain a better understanding of mental health conditions and how they can best support their child. NAMI Basics is an evidence-based program and an adaptation of NAMI Family-to-Family. Available in Spanish: Bases y Fundamentos de NAMI.

Attend or Host

Attend this Support Group


Who can participate NAMI Connection Recovery Support Groups welcome any adult (18+) with a mental health condition. Find the NAMI Connection support group nearest to you.




Learn to lead a Connection Recovery Support Group


Who can lead a group Any adult with a mental health condition who makes mental health and wellness a priority in their daily life can apply to become a NAMI Connection program leader. All potential program leaders are interviewed and screened to determine whether the opportunity is a good fit for the person and for the organization. Program leaders attend an intensive peer-led training to become certified and must be members of NAMI. All certified program leaders should commit to a minimum of one year of service with a co-leader. Bring a NAMI Signature program to a local affiliate in your community by registering for a state training. Click here to Register





About this Support Group

Support Group Model


NAMI Connection Recovery Support Group Program is a peer-led support group program for any adult (18+) with a mental health condition. NAMI Connection grew out of the NAMI Family Support Group model, which was developed in 1997 under the leadership of psychologist and family member Dr. Joyce Burland. Group meetings are held once a week, once every other week or monthly and last for 90 minutes. This program offers participants the support of peers who understand their point of view and celebrate their successes. Each group:

  • Meets weekly, every other week or monthly
  • Lasts 90 minutes
  • Is confidential
  • Does not recommend or endorse any medications or medical therapies
This support group model encourages full group participation and creates upbeat and constructive meetings. Program leaders have found the model easy to use because it successfully manages many problematic situations that often undermine the effectiveness of support groups. The NAMI Connection model has four structures—Structured Agenda, Group Guidelines, Principles of Support and Emotional Stages—and three group processes—Hot Potatoes, Group Wisdom and Problem Solving. Each structure and group process exists to remedy a particular set of negative dynamics that commonly occur in support groups. The model allows leaders to address many of the difficult questions that arise in a support group, including the following:
  • How do you guarantee that the meeting will start and stop on time?
  • How do you respond to disrespectful group members?
  • What’s the best way to deal with “hot potatoes”/difficult subjects?
  • What do you do when someone monopolizes the group’s time?
  • How do you help a group do its own work and not look for direction at every turn?
NAMI Connection groups are led by a team of program leaders who make mental health and wellness a priority in their daily lives. The program leaders offer encouragement and help the group gain insight from hearing the challenges and successes of others. Program leaders are trained to guide participants, not to instruct or provide therapy. Participants can share as much or as little personal information as they want. NAMI Connection groups add to, but do not replace, treatment plans created by individuals and their mental health care providers. NAMI Conexión was launched in 2010. All reference to NAMI Connection Recovery Support Group includes NAMI Conexión, unless noted otherwise. Goals of the support group
  • See the individual first, not the condition
  • Understand that mental health conditions are traumatic events
  • Aim for better coping skills
  • Find strength in sharing experiences
  • Not judge anyone’s pain
  • Provide a safe place for participants to share resources and experiences
  • Establish a sense of community
  • Encourage empathy among participants
  • Promote productive discussion so participants leave feeling better than when they came
Find out More on the NAMI National site





 
 
 
 
 
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Next Training Offered: Peer to Peer

Want to be a facilitator of NAMI Peer to Peer Classes? This is your opportunity!

Training Dates: 10/23/2021 -10/24/2021

Deadline to Apply : 8/29/2021

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Next Training Offered: Family to Family

Want to be a facilitator of NAMI Family to Family Classes? This is your opportunity!

Training Dates: 11/6/2021 - 11/7/2021

Deadline to Apply : 9/20/2021

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Next Training Offered: In Our Own Voices

Want to be a facilitator of NAMI IOOV Classes? This is your opportunity!

Training Date: 12/4/2021

Deadline to Apply : 10/10/2021