National Alliance on Mental Illness
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NAMI Tribute to Heroes

. . . Others showed that Americans demonstrated significant resilience, but the need for vigilance - and access to treatment - remains.

In April 2002, President Bush, appointed the New Freedom Commission on Mental Health to recommend reforms to the nations treatment system. Its preliminary report is due in October. He also pledged to work with Congress to pass mental health parity legislation for health insurance this year-before the November elections.

In remembering September 11th, we also talk about heroes and courage.

  • Heroes: people endowed with great courage and strength; known for great feats with nobility of purpose; and associated with a special achievement, contribution, or perseverance.
    Especially those who risk or sacrifice their lives.
  • Courage: a quality of mind or spirit that enables people to face danger with self-possession bravery and confidence; tenacity; backbone and guts. An inherent capacity for rising to a challenge; moral strength during times of great trial; steadfastness; and perseverance.

Those words indeed apply to soldiers, firefighters, and police.

But they also apply to NAMI.

  • People who live with mental illness every day.
  • Consumers and family members.
  • Heroes who keep trying: seeking lives of dignity and independence; who devote themselves to a son or daughter; parent or spouse.
  • People who hope-that something extraordinary will happen: a cure, remission, or recovery.
  • People who persist in fighting against heavy odds. Holding on to belief in a truth, a principle or an ideal-even when the belief cannot be logically proven or demonstrated by material evidence.

Faith and hope; heroes and courage. That is part of what it means to live with mental illness. It is also part of what it means to be an American.

If you aren't already a NAMI member, we hope you will join us in working to improve the lives of people with mental illness, and to uphold the ideals of individual dignity and freedom upon which America was founded. Join NAMI today!