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Recovery for All: July 2011 Image

In this special issue of Recovery for All we celebrate National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month 2011. We invite you to join us this month in recognizing the importance of hope and understanding of mental health recovery for all and to celebrate the ever-increasing diversity of our communities. Visit the NAMI website for complete information about this special month.

NAMI Diversity and Inclusion Work Group Members Share Personal Perspectives in Honor of National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month

 NAMI Diversity and Inclusion Work Group 2011
(back row from left: Randolph Hack,  Majose
Carrasco [staff liaison], Julia Ann Tate, Isabel Vidales,
Ron Morton, Gareth Fenley, Marin Swesey [staff
 liaison]; front row from left: John Fruttero,
Gloria Walker, Jimi Kelley)

We are pleased to present a collection of five personal statements demonstrating the importance of National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month. The stories below showcase the perspectives and experiences of five members of NAMI’s Diversity and Inclusion Work Group. Each story title is listed below. Click here to read them all.

"Peace and Balance through Integration of Culture in Recovery" by Jimi Kelley, chair of the NAMI Diversity and Inclusion Work Group

"Si Hay Esperanza...Si Se Puede! (Yes, There Is Hope…Yes We Can!)" by John Fruttero

"My Story of Recovery" by Ron Morton

"Affirming and Managing My Identity" by Gareth Fenley<

"Diversity and Inclusion in My Hometown" by Julia Ann Tate

If you are interested in sharing your own story in honor of this special month, take a look at the personal story-writing guide, our newest resource for this special month.

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Highlight of 2011 National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month Activities

NAMI San Francisco member, LaVaughn
King takes the mic at the 2011 National
Minority Mental Health Awareness Month
Town Hall event at the NAMI 2011
annual convention in Chicago, July 7 
  • A National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month town hall networking event was held at the 2011 NAMI Annual Convention for the third year as NAMI’s kick-off celebration of the month. Participants were provided with information about the month and resources available through NAMI. Many stood to express personal enthusiasm for the meaning of this special month and shared local plans for events and activities taking place throughout July. 
  • NAMI Lexington (Ky.) is hosting a variety of events throughout the month including an informational workshop for Latino immigrant families, a mini conference featuring the Sharing Hope program and an annual block party—this year as a reunion of Family-to-Family graduates. Affiliate leader, Yolonda Clay, appeared as a guest on the local TV news to spread the word about National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month.
  • NAMI New Jersey is providing free community screenings of its 2009 documentary, Documenting Our Presence, throughout the state during July, promoted through leaders of its multicultural outreach programs, AACT-NOW!, CAMHOP, SAMHAJ and NAMI NJ en Español. The award-winning documentary provides a compassionate, hopeful look at the experiences of people of diverse ethnic and racial backgrounds who are affected by serious mental illness.
  • The Virginia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services, NAMI Virginia and Colaborando Juntos are sponsoring a National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month Media Contest. Sponsors of activities throughout the state promoting awareness of mental illness, prevention, treatment and research in diverse communities are encouraged to enter photos and/or videos of these activities. Winners will be announced and awarded in August.
  • The National Network to Eliminate Disparities in Behavioral Health (NNED) and NAMI will present a Webinar, "Empowering Our Voices: Developing & Sustaining Multicultural Consumer Networks" July 27 at 1 p.m. on the development of community specific consumer networks to eliminating mental health disparities. This webinar will highlight two networks formed by the Center for Mental Health Services and the four minority behavioral health organizations as examples of current multicultural consumer efforts taking place nationwide. The National Latino Behavioral Health Association and the National Leadership Council on African American Behavioral Health will share highlights from their efforts to date, and information on how to join these consumer networks. Register today!

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New Resources

NAMI’s National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month Website

Click here to find background information, activity highlights and tools you can use including flyers, logos, an activity guide, press release and mayoral/gubernatorial proclamation samples and a personal story writing guide. Use these tools to spread the news in your community!

New Fact Sheet Series on Mental Health among Asian American and Pacific Islanders

A new series of NAMI fact sheets are now available in English, Chinese, Korean and Vietnamese with the following titles:

  • "Mental Health Issues among Asian American and Pacific Islander Communities"
  • "Mental Health Issues among Asian American and Pacific Islander Children and Youth"
  • "Asian American and Pacific Islander Mental Health: A Guide on How to Get Support for Your Loved One"
  • "Recovery for Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders Living with Mental Illness"

Visit NAMI's AAPI resource page to access these new informational resources focused on mental health recovery and support of AAPI adults and youth with specific consideration of cultural factors.


New Tool for CIT for Youth Programs

NAMI recently released a Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) manual to assist families, police, schools, mental health professionals and other community stakeholders, in working together to support youth living with mental illness and improve crisis response. The colorful resource provides case studies, worksheets and tools for planning and implementation to start a local CIT for youth program. NAMI’s new CIT manual was developed by NAMI's Child and Adolescent Action Center and CIT Technical Assistance Resource Center and is available for preview and purchase on the NAMI website.

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In late June, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced new draft standards for collecting and reporting data on race, ethnicity, sex, primary language and disability status, and announced the Administration's plans to begin collecting health data on lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) populations. Both efforts aim to help researchers, policy makers, health providers and advocates to identify and address health disparities afflicting these communities.  View the press release for further details.

Data collection standards are open for public comment until August 1 at New HHS Standards for Data Collection on Minorities and Special Populations

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Upcoming Events

  •  "Empowering Our Voices: Developing & Sustaining Multicultural Consumer Networks" webinar forum, July 27 at 1 p.m. Register now.
  • "Partnering With Tribes to Protect the Circle of Life," the 2011 Action Summit for Suicide Prevention in Scottsdale, Ariz. August 1–4
  • “Addressing Mental Health Disparities through CIT” August 9, 3-5:30 p.m. EDT. Register by August 8.
    CIT’s effectiveness relies on strong collaboration across mental health and public safety systems —in which all cultural communities have a stake—to address underlying issues that lead to criminalization of individuals with mental illness. Find out how to improve your community’s response to mental illness in an upcoming webinar presentation. 
    Details will be provided to registrants in advance closer to the day of the event.

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