When my daughter was diagnosed with a mental illness, NAMI provided current information quickly. Then, they provided a safe place where I could meet with other parents in a similar situation. There are/were no bailouts or final solutions, just the comfort and support of others who understood and encouraged me to have hope.
Mary Lou, This story is about a Support Group not a person. Our group (DBSA Aurora formerly known as DMDA Aurora; Mercy Center Support Group) started in November 1991 at Provena Mercy Center Hospital. The group was made up of the volunteers from the Adult Inpatient members that were released or getting ready to be released. The group was run by two hospital staff members. In June of 1993 the group became a "Self- Support Group" with myself being elected Group Leader. During the time period of June through August 1993 I visited with different organizations in the area: NDMDA (National Depression Manic Depression Association) now know as DBSA (Deppression Bipolar Support Association); NAMI DuPage; NAMI Kane County South; DBSA West; DBSA Fox Valley to list most of them. Our group decided to join what we know today as DBSA and we are the DBSA Aurora Chapter. I talked & visited with the staff of NAMI DuPage a few times in our earlier years but now we recieve & share most of the information via the newsletter & cia of E-mails like this one I'm answering tonight. After sixteen years of being the President; DBSA Contact & Group Leader I stepped down and I'm now a member, Official Resource Person, Member of the Board of directors & Budget Auditor. I probably wrote to much about our group but I wanted to explain how we started with you all and that most all the information from NAMI DuPage is shared with our members. For the group & me personally I Thank You for all the sharing about Mental Health over the years. Tom Johnson Former President, DBSA Contact & Group Leader DBSA Aurora Chapter firstname.lastname@example.org 630-653-3560 Current President & DBSA Contact Claudette Hockin email@example.com 630-554-9823
NAMI of DuPage is an outstanding not-for- profit organization. Their committment to their mission...provide support, education and advocacy to individuls and families with mental illness is apparent in everything they do.
I found the Family to Family education class shortly after my son's initial episode as a senior in high school. The class enabled me to be an effective advocate for my son as well as give me the support and tools to cope with the drastic change in our lives. I've since become a Family to Family teacher (currently teaching my fifth class) because I've personally experienced and witnessed the life changing power of education and support. Lynn
My husband and I stumbed over the group NAMI (at that time called AMI) over 20 years ago thru a newspaper announcement telling about a speaker to present on the subject mental illness. From there we were able to learn more about our son's illness, had support from other family members and learned to acccept the illness, get him the best help at that time; and then the stigma was lifted. We became very involved members, serving on committees, speaking in public, became board members and volunteered in many acitivities. NAMI is life saver in many ways.
I think it is so important that we have committed advocates for the mentally ill in our county and around the country. I think we can best serve these clients when the advocates and professionals work toward a climate of trust and commitment to problem solving. Our clients will be best served if we can put our energies together with the common goal of the welfare of the clients. When we work in an adversarial mode, clients are not best served. For some, this adversarial positioning diverts client energy and focus away from their treatment goals and encourages resistance to recovery efforts.
I started volunteering with NAMI of Dupage County after I had a relaspe with my mental illness. They were very supportive. I joined their speaker's bureau and told my story to many people, police, churches, etc. I then started working there and soon later started my own company keeping NAMI as a client. They have been very instrumental in my recovery. The staff is great!
Wow, NAMI DuPage is one of the first non-for-profit organizations that I've worked for. It is one of the Best! It has a beautiful office near downtown Wheaton, one of the most prominent cities in the county of DuPage. It is a very Christian organization and also helps not only the family of the mentally ill but also the consumers with the resale shop as a place of employment. We treat everyone in a professional manner and help others with a warm sense of belonging. The staff are well-trained and have long-term employment. I have known Mary Lou Lowry, the executive director for many years and she is like a mother to me. Her fundraising skills are outstanding and the organization skills are that of an angel. NAMI DuPage strives for growth and we have reached thousands of members in the last 25 years. The organization started around when I lived in Wheaton and the mental health movement was in gear. Our organization, SA, went right along with the NAMI beginnings and really was part of the grassroots of consumers versus family in the mental health arena. There was a separation of whether the family played a role in their mentally ill sons and daughters and if it was a hereditary illness. I was so glad to have something else to go to and read about and someone else to talk to about my thinking and the situation I was in. We had great fun with the parties, fundraisers, silent auctions, plays, etc. My deceased husband of the Year 2008 and I thank you. We all are grateful for this organization and applaud NAMI DuPage. I intend to continue my growth with them and hope they'll continue to be blessed.
This is a wonderful organization that gives support to family and friends of a mentally ill loved one. It offers support groups, education and many books, videos and various other information. I have a mentally ill loved one and NAMI was a life saver for me.
Great organization that really cares for the relationship of financial needs to those who suffer or are hindered by mental issues. Much more is needed across the country, but NAMI does a great service here in our area of Illinois.