NAMI Family-to-Family is a free, 12-session educational program for family, significant others and friends of people living with mental illness. It is a designated evidenced-based program. Research shows that the program significantly improves the coping and problem-solving abilities of the people closest to an individual living with a mental health condition.
NAMI Family-to-Family is taught by NAMI-trained family members who have been there, and includes presentations, discussion and interactive exercises.
The group setting of NAMI Family-to-Family provides mutual support and shared positive impact—you can experience compassion and reinforcement from people who understand your situation. You can also help others through your own experience. In the program, you'll learn about:
- How to manage crises, solve problems and communicate effectively
- Taking care of yourself and managing your stress
- Developing the confidence and stamina to provide support with compassion
- Finding and using local supports and services
- Up-to-date information on mental health conditions and how they affect the brain
- Current treatments, including evidence-based therapies, medications and side effects
- The impact of mental illness on the entire family
A recent graduate of NAMI Jax Family-to-Family wrote:
"My wife and I are not very active in NAMI these days but I wanted to share some thoughts about the Family to Family (F2F) class.
We strongly believe F2F was worth the time to drive to attend the class. Our instructors, followed a NAMI provided manual that is the same nation-wide and updated every year. You can take notes in the material as It’s yours to keep. The material ends up getting assembled into a 8 1/2 x 11 inch notebook that fits perfect on a bookcase or out of site. Trust me, you will refer back to it every year, maybe more.
The instructors are volunteers that share the duty of moving through the material. They switch off so you and they don’t get tired. You and your classmates will also share in reading short but meaningful passages each class.
You will move through the material at an appropriate pace leaving time to share personal stories (if you want to). We found out how other families dealt with issues that were similar to ones we faced and found out how others were more or less successful than we were. And as you might expect, we found out everyone’s family had unique challenges. From providers, pharmaceutical, financial, logistical and time everyone had their own roadblocks to deal with.
We laughed and cried during every class and often while driving home. Our class had a medical doctor (parent) attend, by the conclusion we heard they learned things!
The bottom line is this class is essential if you want to provide the best support for your loved one. I hope this email results in each seat being filled for this session and a long waiting list for future sessions.
Our community is very lucky to have a strong NAMI chapter with so many caring volunteers. We are also blessed with trained instructor / facilitators who volunteer their time to lead the F2F classes. If you’ve been, tell a friend. If you haven’t don’t wait, go!"