Sunday, December 10, 2023

NAMI announces upcoming events

| April 12, 2023 1:00 AM

SANDPOINT — National Alliance on Mental Illness is hosting two community events this month to kick off the warmer season.

NAMI Far North works toward not only aiding those with mental illness by providing resources and education, but also by ensuring their families also are educated, and the community knows how best to help them as well.

That education and awareness come in a variety of means, from public awareness events, effecting change through policy reform that targets mental illness to hosting community workshops and monthly support groups. The organization also produces a number of publications including a newsroom that focuses on mental health stories and a podcast that tackles a number of topics from sexual assault to mental health and the legal system.

A support group has already been set for April 19 and will feature the founders of a mental health resource as guest speakers. Justine Murray and Matt Connery, founders of The Ethan Murray Fund, a local non-profit aimed at giving financial assistance for mental health services will share the story of Justine’s son Ethan, his life with schizophrenia, and their incredible journey hiking the Idaho Centennial Trail from Nevada to Canada, to honor his life and raise money for The Ethan Murray Fund.

Following the guest speakers, the evening will shift into peer-led support groups, including one for those living with mental illness and one for the family member of those individuals, which is also open to friends. The event will be held on April 19 from 5:30 to 8 p.m. at the Veterans of Foreign Wars Building, 1325 Pine St., Sandpoint.

Then, from April 24 to June 2, NAMI Far North will host another community event, this time centered around mental health education for the whole family. Held in person and virtually via Zoom, the Family-to-Family will be a free event featuring an evidence-based educational program for families, significant others, and friends of people with mental health conditions. Information and skills available from this program have been shown to significantly improve the coping and problem-solving abilities of the people closest to a person with a mental health condition, officials said in a press release.

Registration for the education event is available online on the NAMI website c.

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