A free mental health education class for family members and others with an adult loved one who suffers from a mental illness will be offered by the NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) Four County chapter next month. The class will be held in Bryan in the third floor auditorium of the Community Hospitals and Wellness Center, 433 W. High St.
The 12-week class, which is open to residents of any county, begins Tuesday, September 17 from 6 to 8:30 p.m.
Called Family to Family, the class covers a different topic each week, including: learning about the symptoms and facts of major depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, panic disorder and obsessive-compulsive disorder; understanding each diagnosis as well as the treatment of each illness; dealing with difficult periods that a person suffering from a mental illness goes through, including relapse; an up-to-date medication review; a problem-solving workshop; developing strategies on how to better communicate with the mentally ill loved one; and more.
The curriculum was professionally developed by NAMI and is continually updated to include the most recent information about medications and medical research on mental illness. Family to Family is now listed in SAMHSA’s national registry of evidence-based programs and practices.
Participants will receive a notebook full of information on each topic covered during the class.
Co-leaders of the fall Family to Family class are Trisha Vassar and Veria Frank, each of whom has a family member with a mental illness. They have taught the class before and completed a three-day training in order to become certified as a Family to Family instructor.
Class evaluations from past Family to Family participants report that the information presented is very helpful. However, the opportunity to share and learn from other persons who have gone through similar situations with a mentally ill loved one is the most valuable part of the class.
To find out more about the Bryan class, please contact Trisha or Veria at 419/237-3103 during the day or Trish at 419/330-9476 other times.
Although the class is free and open to any family member, friend or person who works closely with someone with a mental illness, pre-registration is required.