NAMI Pomona Valley
National Alliance on Mental Illness

March Newsletter 2023


First Tuesday of the Month
6:15pm - 7:30pm

Claremont United Church of Christ
233 Harrison Ave
Claremont Ca, 91711

Location: Sumner Room

Please make sure to social distance

If you are feeling ill, we also have a English Zoom option.

NEW Link to Zoom meeting:


Family Support Group is here to connect you with families and friends who also have a loved one in their life that is suffering from a mental illness. 
We are here to support you!

We are in this together!

NAMI Pomona Valley Te inivitamos a nuestro evento:
Grupo de Apoyo Familiar! 1er martes del mes

El Grupo de Apoyo familiar esta aquí para connectarte con familias y amistades de personas que sufren de una enfremedad de salud mental. Estamos aqui para apoyarte. 

Juntos se puede!

**Family Support In Person offered in English & Spanish**

Connection Support Group Online

Connections Support Via Zoom
Every Friday at 6:30 – 8:00 PM

NAMI WALKS Greater Los Angeles

April 29, 2023
Los Angeles State Historic Park
10am - 2pm

* Register Now *
With your support and high spirits, we intend to make an
unprecedented impact on mental health in Los Angeles.
You won’t want to miss it!!

Let's raise our voices together to be heard, united in our commitment to raise awareness of NAMI Greater Los Angeles County's free, mental health support, and education. Each year, we bring together corporations, community organizations, families, and individuals to raise funds and to meet LA's mental health champions, who have worked to end the stigma.

Whether you're a previous participant or a new voice waiting to be heard, our Mental Health Fest and Walk will inspire.

We Thank you in advance for the support!!

Register Now
With your support and high spirits, we intend to make an unprecedented impact on mental health in Los Angeles.
You won’t want to miss it
Let's raise our voices together to be heard, united in our commitment to raise awareness of NAMI Greater Los Angeles County's free, mental health support, and education. Each year, we bring together corporations, community organizations, families, and individuals to raise funds and to meet LA's mental health champions, who have worked to end the stigma.
Whether you're a previous participant or a new voice waiting to be heard, our Mental Health Fest and Walk will inspire.

Online Survey: Your Input re: 988 Crisis Hotline

SCPS Alternative Crisis Response Committee is working with LAC DMH to develop protocols and screening tools for best practices in limiting law enforcement response whenever possible. This includes ways to divert calls from 911 to 988 as well as ways to operationalize when and how MH providers should take lead in co-response situations. Their top priority has been to stress the importance of involving stakeholders in this process from the beginning.
They are developing a database of example behavioral health crisis cases that they can use to get feedback from stakeholders.  Please share your input in the survey link below.

Here's the link to the survey:

"Together for Mental Health"

Get ready for an energizing in-person and online experience celebrating all the unique and important voices — including yours — who are creating positive change in mental health.
Whether you’re a long-time NAMI advocate or brand-new to our movement, NAMICon is for you.

If you have a story to share and a passion for mental health awareness, advocacy and education, you have a spot with your name on it at NAMICon.

Personal Stories

by: Tega Orhorhoro

Growing up, mental health was not something that was talked about in my family. We would say that anxiety was a myth, depression was a myth and praying was the answer to all the problems. I would never bring up depression or my mental health because I felt like all I had to do was go to school and get good grades. So when I couldn’t eat or sleep from anxiety, I didn’t know how to articulate how I felt.

Growing up in my African household, we wouldn't bring up feelings of discomfort or depression because the answer was always the same: pray about it. Pray the depression away. This was the mindset I was conditioned to believe when it came to my mental health issues. I was always told to be strong and to never show weakness even when you are experiencing hardships.

My first panic attack was in college. I was a freshman getting ready for finals week, and I was part of a program that was designed to help students during the transition from high school to college. This program cared more about passing grades and external factors than the pressure and stress that would come with the transition and changing expectations. I tried to talk to my mentor about what I was feeling during this time, but those feelings were brushed over many times, and I again felt the outside pressure to ignore and compartmentalize my feelings while focusing on my academic performance.

After several nights of studying for my math final, I broke down crying on my dorm room floor. The stress and anxiety had culminated to a point that I didn't understand what I was feeling or why I felt it. I felt like I could not continue, and that I was a disappointment to the program. Even worse, allowing myself to grieve and give in to my negative feelings made me feel like I was a disappointment to my family. This was a moment that I would never forget and I would need to learn from.

Source: NAMI

Should you wish to share your own story

Collaborative care for serious
mental health conditions

An innovative telehealth program gives patients direct access to pharmacists with specialty training in psychiatric medicine.

People living with severe mental health conditions such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder often rely on medication to stave off difficult symptoms, including suicidal thoughts and psychosis. But side effects and other barriers can make sticking with a drug regimen challenging.

“Schizophrenia and bipolar disorder often develop earlier in life, and younger patients can struggle with the idea of going on lifelong medication,” said Esti Iturralde, PhD, a research scientist with the Kaiser Permanente Division of Research.

In addition, some psychiatric medications increase the risk of obesity, diabetes, and heart disease.

“It’s a double-edged sword, because when patients achieve psychiatric stability on their medications, they may then have to contend with more physical health problems over time,” Iturralde added. “They have to balance these 2 forces that are sometimes opposed to one another.”

Helping patients find balance
Choosing drugs and dosages and adjusting them over time is essential in caring for patients with mental health conditions. An innovative telehealth program at Kaiser Permanente in Northern California gives patients with serious mental health conditions direct access to psychiatric clinical pharmacists.

Psychiatrists continue to oversee the care of their patients and partner with the clinical pharmacists, who join the collaborative care team and act as care navigators. They establish ongoing relationships with patients through regular video and telephone appointments.

“Our clinical pharmacists help manage their medications, monitor their labs and blood pressure, and connect them with preventive health and other support services,” said psychiatrist Lisa Fazzolari, DO.

The program is currently in operation at 8 locations in Northern California, with plans to eventually serve as many as 27,000 patients. To help train more psychiatric clinical pharmacists, who have 2 years of additional training specifically in the field of psychiatry, Kaiser Permanente established an in-house postgraduate training program in Northern California

Source: Kaiser Permanente

!!Volunteers Needed!!

We need new presenters and are looking for other volunteers, who are willing to be trained; positions hopefully will be posted soon.
More details to follow soon on our website.

Additional positions coming, current position open:

*Community Volunteer Tabling at Events*

You may also contact the office for more details.
Phone: (909) 399-0305

!! Attention Educators & Parents !!

Would you like to see NAMI presence at your School or District?
Reaching out to our local Pomona Valley Community.

Please contact us to strengthen our relationships within the community.
We also need your help with partnering with our local schools.

If interested or can help connect us, please reach out to Kyoni Cummings
our Education Coordinator
3 Tips to Keep Your Catastrophic Thoughts at Bay
Here’s what to do when you feel like the world is ending.

People with anxiety often come to therapy complaining of a specific and extreme form of worrying. They ask questions like:

  • “If my partner does not reply to me the second I text them, I always assume that the worst might have happened. How do I manage this habit?”
  • “I cannot stand the thought of failing my exam, it makes me feel like I will always be a failure in life. Is this normal?”
  • Whenever I meet someone new, even the slightest weird signal from them makes me think they hate me. How can I break this destructive thinking?”

If your mind also plays a reel of worst-case scenarios every time your anxiety rises, you might be engaging in catastrophizing. Catastrophic thinking involves a distortion of perception and cognition.

Typically, when a person catastrophizes, they blow things out of proportion and feel irrationally threatened by current, past, or imaginary situations. If you have a tendency for catastrophizing, here are three steps you can take to de-escalate your thought processes.

#1. Come back to the present
Catastrophizing can lead you down a dark thought spiral quickly. The best thing to do in such a scenario is to immediately bring yourself back to the present.
Research published in Acta Psychologica suggests that mindfulness, both in the moment and as a personality trait, shows great promise as a combatant to anxiety and catastrophizing. Training and practicing mindfulness can give your emotion regulation faculties a much-needed boost.

Another practice that can help someone who struggles with catastrophizing is breathwork. Research shows that deep breathing — or diaphragmatic breathing — helps relax anxiety by lowering heart rate and blood pressure. And, focusing on your breath helps ground you in the present and therefore acts as a buffer between you and your catastrophic thoughts.

#2. Establish a time to worry
Small worries accumulate and turn into catastrophic thinking. Research explains that setting aside and scheduling a block of time solely for worrying is a simple but effective technique for stress management.

If anxious or catastrophic thoughts occur to you when you’re engaged in something important, you can defer them to your ‘worry time’ and focus on the present moment. It can also ensure that you become aware of and address all your anxieties on a regular basis.

Source: Psychology Today

Workplace Mental Health:

In this episode of NAMI’s podcast, NAMI CEO Daniel H. Gillison Jr. speaks with NAMI’s Chief Innovation Officer Darcy Gruttadaro, J.D., about presenteeism, psychological safety and how employees and employers alike — in every workplace — can benefit from prioritizing mental health.  


City Council meetings cover an array of topics within local Government. With so many ongoing changes we want to make sure NAMI's voice is heard. Its time to stand up and raise our collective voices to help you and your families. When policies and programs are being decided we want to advocate for Mental Health Services, Housing and so much more. Please take the
time to see when your local city may meet and what is on the agenda. If any topics arise we want to make sure we are advocating for ourselves, families and the community at large who may not be able to articulate their needs. Some local City links below.

Fore more information if you want to assist in advocating email

?Need Information?
NAMI Pomona Valley Helpline
Is here for YOU!!
(909) 399-0305

Support Groups

Classes, Support Groups, and General Meetings. In-person or Virtual meetings via the Video conferencing platform Zoom. You can also contact the office for more information.

Connection Support Group Online

Connections Support Via Zoom
Every Friday at 6:30 – 8:00 PM

Family Support Group Online
1st Tuesday of every month at 6:15 – 7:30 PM

If you have any questions please feel free
to call the NAMI Pomona Valley Helpline: (909) 399-0305
Available 9am to 9pm
Are you a Marathon Runner?

NAMI is proud to return as a charity partner of the 2023 Los Angeles Marathon + Charity Half Marathon taking place on March 19th, 2023 and you can be a part of it! As a member of Team NAMI, you have the choice of running or walking the L.A. Marathon 26.2
or the exclusive Charity Half Marathon - only available to those who participate on behalf of a charity - all while providing help + hope to those impacted by mental illness. When you run or walk with TEAM NAMI, you let people know it's ok to talk about mental health, and that NAMI is here for everyone who needs us.

Spaces are limited. If you’d like more information please reach out to Davi at

Registration link:
Greater Crisis Care Access: The Reality and the Promise of 9-8-8
The number to reach the National Lifeline, access to confidential support for anyone experiencing a suicide or mental health crisis has now become much easier.

Athlete Well-Being:

NAMI CEO Daniel H. Gillison Jr. speaks with former NFL players Marcus Smith II, Soul Cole and Zach Moore about their personal journeys with sports and mental health, how the incident with Damar Hamlin has affected the NFL community, and how everyone can play a role in supporting young athletes’ well-being. In honor of Black History Month, they also discuss the further stigmas faced around Black male mental health both on and off the field.
Events in MARCH

Free Diaper Distribution Monthly
Eligibility Requirements
  • Must live in San Bernardino County
  • Must be within the gross income guidelines
  • Must not be receiving diapers from another Community Action Partnership of San Bernardino partner
You can sign up to pick diapers once a month.
Sizes Available: Newborn to 6 & Training Pants 2T to 5T
For more information call the Health Education Center at (909) 806-1816.

Drug & Alcohol Support -Pomona
2pm - 6pm
Spanish 3/2/23 & 3/16/23
English 3/14/23 & 2/28/23

Pomona Public Library
625 S. Garey Ave, Pomona, CA

Harriet Tubman Unity Walk 
March 11th
(1.3mi) from Alliance Community Cultural Center in Downtown Pomona to statue dedication at Lincoln Park.

10:00 am - Rally at the Alliance Community Cultural Center
10:30 am - Walk to Lincoln Park (1.3 mi)
12:00 pm - Harriet Tubman Statue Official Dedication
Alliance Community Cultural Center 
406 West 2nd Street 
Pomona, CA 91766

Youth Group
March 11th 
2nd Saturday of the Month 
12pm to 2pm 
Pomona Pride Center’s Youth Group is a safe and welcoming space for LGBTQIA+ youth and allies (12-17) to support and uplift each other through a variety of engaging discussions, fun activities and workshops.
Pomona Pride Center 
386 South Thomas Street
Pomona, 91766

Pomona Art Walk
March 11, 2023 @ 5pm - 9pm

The Downtown Pomona Arts Colony has an art walk every second Saturday of the month that brings big crowds to stroll the streets. Over a dozen galleries host receptions and open houses to showcase their latest exhibits and artists. Enjoy music, food, and wine.

Downtown Pomona
West 2nd Street and Garey Avenue
Pomona, CA

Call the NAMI Helpline at
Or text "HelpLine" to 62640

NAMI Membership Dues:
Are you Current? Donations and membership are actually tax deductible!

Membership benefits include:

  • Our flagship magazine, The NAMI Advocate
  • Membership with NAMI National, NAMI California, and our Pomona Valley Affiliate
  • Voting privileges 
  • Discounts at the NAMI Store and on registration at the NAMI National Convention
  • Access to all the information and features on the website and more

NAMI National is a 501(c)3 tax-exempt organization and your donation is tax-deductible within the guidelines of U.S. law. To claim a donation as a deduction on your U.S. taxes, please keep your email donation receipt as your official record. We'll send it to you upon successful
completion of your donation.

NAMI education classes and training programs are held throughout the year. Class seating is limited and fill quickly. Training programs are offered upon availability. Please fill out this contact form to be notified when registration for classes become available or for training program availability.

Support groups will continue as scheduled and info can be
found on our website. 

An 8 week course for family members and caregivers of individuals afflicted with severe mental illness, such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and major depression. Teachers are trained family members guided by a curriculum prepared and regularly updated by the national offices of NAMI. The course covers research to date on causes of mental illness, plus treatment and recovery programs as well as communication and coping skills.

To register please call 909-258-9864
Kyoni Cummings

If you Need Help Reach out

Call 911 or your local emergency number immediately.
1-800-273-8255 (TALK)

Other Resources Check the link below

NAMI POMONA VALLEY | P.O. Box 53, Pomona, CA 91711
Helpline (909) 399-0305 | Email: