April 2019 Newsletter
NAMI San Diego is looking for HEROES
for NAMIWalks/Runs San Diego County

6 Easy Ways You can be a NAMIWalks HERO!
  1. Become a NAMIWalks Sponsor! More info  Sign-up(online)
  2. Participate in the Wellness Expo! Sign-up(online) Sign-up(pdf)
  3. Start a NAMIWalks Team! Register
  4. Volunteer on Event Day! Register
  5. Walk with us! Register
  6. Donate to NAMIWalks! Donate
NAMI Walks/Runs Kick-off Party Recap
It was the TACO of the town at the NAMIWalks/Runs San Diego County Kick off on Tuesday, March 12th, at AleSmith Brewing Company. It was great to see our team captains, sponsors, board members, wellness expo participants and walkers.
Shannon Switzer, A NAMIWalker said,
"I am so glad I went to the kick-off event! It was a lot of fun connecting with fellow NAMI staff and supporters. The presentation was motivational, the tacos were delicious, and the whole cause behind the event is absolutely inspiring!"

Thank you, Shannon, and everyone else for joining us to learn more about NAMIWalks and to
CBRE Donations to PeerLINKS
On Valentine’s Day, employees at many companies across San Diego chose to mark the occasion by holding potlucks, decorating their space in red or pink, hanging heart-shaped decorations, and even handing out chocolates and candy to fellow co-workers or patrons at their place of business.

Lilly Gastil and her colleagues at CBRE, a Fortune 500 Company which delivers real estate services worldwide, decided to do something wonderfully different! They decided to help individuals living with a serious mental illness. Specifically, they held an event to collect toiletries, and other essential items, and donated them to PeerLINKS, a program of NAMI San Diego.

PeerLINKS provides Enhanced Peer Support services to individuals who have been in and out of psychiatric hospitals, Emergency Departments and crisis homes. Typically, our clients are going through a very difficult and challenging time when they join our program, and appear to feel lost and overwhelmed. Additionally, many are experiencing homelessness and we are often their only source of support.

Therefore, we were very excited and thankful to have received almost 150 items including: sleeping bags, shampoo, body wash, towels, wet wipe towelettes, and sunscreen.
From left to right: Martin Ponciano (Behavioral Health Clinician), Crystal Castro (Bilingual Peer/Family Support Specialist), Sharifa Chamberlain, Liz Gambini and Erin Kennedy (all Peer/Family Support Specialists), Charlene Marshall (Peer/Family Support Specialist Team Lead), all part of the PeerLINKS team, Lilly Gastil (Executive Assistant, Pacific Southwest Division at CBRE) and Bee (Lilly’s puppy). 
From left to right: Sharifa Chamberlain, Liz Gambini (both are Peer/Family Support Specialists at PeerLINKS) and Martin Ponciano (Behavioral Health Clinician, PeerLINKS). 
"This Person" Award - Karen Godfrey
Each year at the San Diego County Wellness and Recovery Summit, the award for “This Person” is presented to someone who has exemplified and played an instrumental role in a person’s recovery journey. They could be a family member, a friend, a Service Provider, or a Peer. This year's winner was Karen Godfrey, who works in NAMI San Diego's IHOT location in San Marcos.
Education & Advocacy
Education & Advocacy (E&A) Meeting
First Thursday of every month, 6:00 - 7:30 pm
NAMI San Diego Office
5095 Murphy Canyon Road, Suite #320
San Diego, CA 92123
NAMI San Diego's Education and Advocacy meetings provide information about mental health conditions, recovery, support and other topics essential to create and maintain a life of wellness. Meetings are free and open to everyone in the community.
Helpline Numbers
An Education Program for Families and Friends over the age of 18, who have a loved one also over the age of 18, who lives with a mental health challenge
NAMI Basics for Parents and Caregivers is a free, six-session program designed for parents and other family caregivers of children and adolescents under the age of 18 with emotional and behavioral difficulties. NAMI Basics for Parents and Caregivers helps parents and other family caregivers of children to understand the illnesses that are causing those behavioral difficulties, and the critical role families play in the treatment of those illnesses. The program is taught by trained teachers who are also the parents or family caregivers of individuals who experienced emotional or behavioral difficulties prior to age 13. Participants are asked to attend all 6 classes per session. I nterest lists now forming for North County Coastal and Central San Diego regions.
for Adults 18 & older with loved ones of any age
The purpose of the NAMI San Diego Side by Side program is to connect an individual who lives with a mental health condition with a Companion. Participants and Companions have the opportunity to meet up in the community. Looking for Volunteers!
Support for Families with Youth


NAMI SD’s CYF Liaison offers San Diego parents and caregivers a FREE, open, monthly coaching and support group meeting for parents and caregivers of children and youth (through age 25) living with challenging behaviors, mental and behavioral health concerns.  No parent seeking support will be turned away!
Upcoming Meeting Dates
Meets 3rd Wednesday of the month
6:00pm - 8:00pm

April 17th
May 15th
June 19th

Meeting location :
NAMI San Diego
5095 Murphy Canyon Rd, Ste 320
San Diego, 92123
Principles of Family Youth Professional Partnerships (PFYPP)
is a 1 hour online course for those interested in learning the roles of
Family Youth Partners within the Children's System of Care.
Children's Mental Health Well-Being Celebration
Sunrise of HOPE Summit - Churches & Mental Health
On Saturday, March 9, 2019, La Jolla Presbyterian Church hosted the Sunrise of HOPESummit - a "1-day mental health event, with keynote speaker Kay Warren, co-founder of Saddleback Church. The message throughout the day was to inform, educate, and equip anyone personally struggling with - or whose loved ones are struggling with - mental health issues.”
The event offered a wealth of keynotes speakers such as Dr. Nick Yphantides - Chief Medical Officer for San Diego County, pastor’s wife Kay Warren, and Joyce Bruggeman - Executive Director of Survivors of Suicide Loss in San Diego. Break away sessions were offered by licensed practitioners on mental health for adults and children, addictions, suicide prevention training, rendering aid, and PTSD for Military Veterans. Community resources were available and lunch provided. Additionally, there was a panel question & answer session with Dr. Stephanie Salo, Dr. Galen Morgan Cooper, Suzette Southfox - NAMI San Diego’s Education Director, which was moderated by Rev. Dr. Paul Cunningham. 
Nearly 400 congregants and community members attended this successful event which demonstrates the powerful relationship between faith communities and mental health and wellness. We look forward to next year’s Sunrise of HOPE Summit and growing deep connections between communities of faith and mental health & wellness.
Cinco de Mayo Fiesta to Benefit NAMI San Diego
Cinco de Mayo Fiesta to Benefit NAMI San Diego
Saturday, May 4, 2019
2:30 pm to 5:30 pm
St. Michael’s by-the-Sea Episcopal Church
2775 Carlsbad Blvd., Carlsbad, CA

Join St. Michael’s by-the-Sea at their annual fundraiser to support mental health programs in the community.

Enjoy a catered taco cart, dessert and drink tables, outdoor seating on our lovely lawn, games, a raffle, entertainment. And much more...

St. Michael’s by-the-Sea Pickleball Association will assist in hosting the event.
Plant Sale - Carlsbad Village Street Faire
This March alone, NAMI San Diego participated in three large mental health events hosted by churches in the North, Central and North Inland areas of San Diego County. NAMI San Diego understands there is a growing number of faith traditions whose congregations are embracing the need for stigma free mental health ministry. In fact, through SD County funding, NAMI San Diego continues to support the worlds of behavioral health and religious identity in San Diego’s North Inland area by bringing free, dynamic presentations on mental health and stigma to churches and community organizations. These engaging presentations are proved by NAMI San Diego trained graduates of the Faith Based Academy and presented in teams of two - a clergy or lay leaders along with licensed mental health clinicians.
Presentations are designated for the North Inland community and are free, last about an hour and are available weekdays, evenings and weekends through June.

Contact FaithBasedMH@namisd.org  or call (858) 634-6580 ext. 113.
People choose to  volunteer  for a variety of reasons. For some it offers the chance to give something back to the community or make a difference to the people around them. For others it provides an opportunity to develop new skills or build on existing experience and knowledge.

Volunteering with NAMI San Diego is more than just another opportunity. It is becoming a part of the Mental Health Community! With your support we can show that “It’s OK to talk about Mental Illness”

Please fill out the online volunteer application .
To RSVP please email outreach@namisd.org or call Sam Roberts (858) 634-6580 x148 
NAMI Homefront  is a free, six-session class for family, friends and significant others of Military Service Members and Veterans. The class helps families comprehend what the Military Service Member/ Veteran is experiencing related to trauma, combat stress, civilian life, PTSD and other mental health conditions. Topics covered include mental health, communication, handling crises, treatment and recovery.
SpeakUp5K San Diego
April  14, 2019  

Raise awareness of teenage mental health

A fun, family-friendly race is perfect for all ages and abilities. Get together with friends, family, and coworkers as we “SpeakUp” together. 

A portion of the race proceeds will be donated to Rady Children’s Hospital to support its children’s mental health initiative.
NAMI San Diego Success Story
I am a NAMI success story thanks to the work of caregivers like Annette, Alice and Roopa who guided me through my recovery. I am a program manager now for the NAMI affiliate here in Sacramento, and I wanted to let you all know how valuable and important the work you are doing is. I went from no life to a full life in under 5 years thanks to the kindness and support offered by NAMI San Diego, and the (then) Hope Connections program. Now I facilitate support groups, teach Peer-to-Peer and help others who are in a similar situation to the one I was in not long ago. I give back as a volunteer web admin and outreach specialist and I truly love the work I do for NAMI. Thank you NAMI San Diego, and I hope that NAMI Sacramento can grow to be an inspirational community resource for as many families and peers as NAMI San Diego cares for. Thank you Annette for always believing in me. Keep up the good work team! Woo NAMI!

- Westin Bailey
Learn How To Contribute Part Of Your Tax Return
Toward Law Enforcement Training!

Now that it's tax season, spread the word around your local area to make NAMI California part of your new years resolution. The California income tax return form includes the option to voluntarily contribute a designated amount of your tax return to a notable cause throughout the state. Check the box on "National Alliance on Mental Illness California Voluntary Tax Contribution Fund" to better help law enforcement in their area respond to crisis situations! This training is a direct improvement to your community
Careers at NAMI San Diego

We invite you to apply for any of our current employment opportunities . To apply for a position, please email your cover letter and resume to jobs@namisd.org
NAMI San Diego Board of Directors
President, Ricardo Soto
Vice President, Pamela Nichols
Secretary, Louise Groszkruger
Treasurer, Steve O'Kane
Past President, Andy Kaiser
Aaron Byzak
Yuliana Gallegos-Rodriguez, Ph.D
Jan Thompson
CEO, Cathryn Nacario

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