What is NAMI Family-to-Family?
NAMI Family-to-Family is a free, 12 class education program for family members of adults living with mental illness. In this program the term family is viewed from a broad perspective to include parents, siblings, spouses, adult sons and daughters, partners and significant others. The course is designed to help all family members understand and support their loved one with mental illness while maintaining their own well-being. The course includes information on illnesses such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, major depression and other mental health conditions. Thousands of families describe the program as life-changing. The program is taught by trained teachers who are also family members and know what it is like to have a loved one living with mental illness. In May 2013 the program was added to the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) National Registry of Evidence-based Programs and Programs.
What does Family-to-Family include?
- Current information about the major mental illnesses and the most current research available on the biological aspects of these illnesses
- Up-to-date information on the possibilities for living in recovery, including a variety of treatment strategies currently available
- A class on empathy which creates an understanding of the subjective, lived experience of a person living with mental illness
- Specific skills-training in the areas of problem solving, listening, communication techniques and handling crises and relapse
- An overall focus on care for the caregiver such as learning to cope with worry, stress and emotional overload
- Guidance on locating appropriate supports and services within the community and offer tips of advocating for those supports and services
- Information on advocacy initiatives designed to improve and expand services, with an emphasis on personal advocates for the parent/caregiver and child on an individual level
For More Information:
State Family Programs Coordinator