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See our recent newsletter for current information about support groups and classes.

The "Family-to-Family Education Program"

The next class is scheduled for: September 15 through November 3, 2022
Time: 5:30pm-7:30
Place: Eureka

Questions and registration call Lea Nagy 707-845-3233


The "Family-to-Family Education Program" (F-to-F) is designed to help & educate family members and other caregivers of people living with mental illness. The F-to-F is a free course which meets once a week for 8 weeks. Student books are provided. There are no tests. Developed by NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness), managed by NAMI California & sponsored by our local NAMI Humboldt affiliate, the course material aims to empower. (Note that the course material is not designed for individuals living with mental illness or for professionals in the mental-health field.)

F-to-F offers the enrolled family members information about the major brain illnesses & medications, compassionate support, communication-skills & problem-solving training, & resource references. The team-teachers are specially trained, local, NAMI volunteers who themselves have mentally ill loved ones in their families--hence the descriptive name "Family-to-Family." The program, although offered elsewhere in America for around two decades, was first offered in Humboldt County in 2001.

Students generally emerge grateful for the feelings of understanding, empowerment & hope which the educational lessons develop, as well as for the supportive, friendly rapport which the group experience engenders.

Class size is limited & advance registration is required. When accepted, the student commits to seeing the course through to the end, when certificates of achievement are awarded.

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A waiting list for the next opportunity to enroll is maintained. If you're interested, contact an F-to-F teacher:

Lea Nagy - Phone: 707-845-3233.

Please clearly provide your name, phone number(s), mailing address & e-address (if you have one), and explain the reason(s) for your interest in taking the course. Couples are encouraged to sign up for the F-to-F together.

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The F-to-F team-teachers are really just family-member volunteers and care providers with the dedication & determination to help other family members. The teachers are drawn from the ranks of those who have completed the "Family-to-Family Education Program."

They get their training--which essentially consists of becoming familiar with the teacher's book that each is given--over one weekend. Other prospective teachers from other localities participate. Some of the weekend's expenses are generally paid for. The teacher-training is a very motivating, emotional & bonding experience.

Likewise, the actual teaching, though it takes a lot of time & pays nothing, is unbelievably rewarding, as the students are generally touchingly appreciative of both the teachers' volunteerism & the 8 lessons' value to them. All the material to be taught is provided by NAMI National in the teacher's book. Each class is intense, with great amounts of information to be covered.

New volunteers are always being sought to go for training. Find info. about upcoming teacher-training dates & locations from the sources named above, or at under the link "Family to Family."

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Family to Family Education Program What is NAMI's Family-to-Family Program?

NAMI California and its Affiliates offer the Family to Family 8 Week Education course free to family members of persons with serious mental illness.

The course consists of 8 classes once a week (usually in the evening) that last 2-1/2 hours. Class size is limited to a maximum of 25 persons.

The course is co-taught by trained volunteers who are family members. It includes strategies for handling crises and relapse as well as care for the caregiver: coping with worry, stress, and emotional overload.

The following provides a detail outline of the topics covered in each week of the course.
Over 115,000 family members have graduated from this national program.

What does the course include?

  • Current information about schizophrenia, major depression, bipolar disorder (manic depression), panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, borderline personality disorder, and co-occurring brain disorders and addictive disorders.

  • Up-to-date information about medications, side effects, and strategies for medication adherence.

  • Current research related to the biology of brain disorders and the evidence-based, most effective treatments to promote recovery · Gaining empathy by understanding the subjective, lived experience of a person with mental illness.

  • Learning in special workshops for problem solving, listening, and communication techniques.

  • Acquiring strategies for handling crises and relapse.

  • Focusing on care for the caregiver: coping with worry, stress, and emotional overload · Guidance on locating appropriate supports and services within the community.

  • Information on advocacy initiatives designed to improve and expand services.

How can I find a course in my area?

For further information, please contact Angela at 707- 498-1258
Thank You!

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