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NAMI 2009 National Convention: "Creating a Healthy Future For Us All"

Preliminary Schedule of Events

Tuesday, July 7

8:30 am – 5:30 pm Convention Registration Open
8:30am – 12:45pm Special Needs Seminar

General overview on Special Needs will be held from 8:30 – 11:30 am.

Four concurrent workshops on specific estate planning issues will be held from 11:45am – 12:45pm.

Special Needs Seminar Workshops:

  • Mental Health Care Directives and Powers of Attorney 
    Health care directives (powers of attorney and living wills) can help family members make medical decisions for a  loved one who is ill.  However, it is not always clear what authority the agent has, whether the loved one can revoke the directive or how controlling the documents actually are.  This session will address this and other issues.

    Doris Hawks, member, Special Needs Alliance, Los Altos, CA 

    Robert Fleming, member, Special Needs Alliance, Tucson, AZ

  • Creating a Special Needs Trust that Adjusts to Changing Circumstances.
    The key to effective estate planning lies not in predicting the future, but in anticipating change and ensuring that there are resources – financial, legal, and people resources -- to weather the storm.  This session will include a basic explanation of some of the more common planning techniques used in this area, including a discussion of Special Needs Trusts and their alternatives.

    Edward Wilcenski, past president, Special Needs Alliance, Clifton Park, NY
  • Using Private Care Managers in Special Needs Trusts
    A care manager can serve as an advocate for a family with a son or daughter with mental illness to direct the trustee in carrying out the terms of the Special Needs Trust.  In addition, a professional care manager can often encourage compliance with treatment, identify and intervene with substance abuse issues, identify services in the beneficiary’s community and create annual plans to budget the resources for the beneficiary’s lifetime.

    Stephen Dale, member, Special Needs Alliance, Walnut Creek, CA
  • Tax Planning and Planned Giving in a Special Needs Trust
    Planned giving should be integrated into your estate plan to support those charitable organizations to which you have been committed.  This session will also explore how to use a Special Needs Trust as a tax planning tool to provide for a loved one with a mental illness while minimizing taxes.

    Brad Frigon, member, Special Needs Alliance, Englewood, CO
9:00am – 12:00pm Certified Peer Support Specialists: Their Unique Role in Working with Individuals Living with Mental Illness
9:00am – 12:00pm

Town Hall Meeting: Bebe Moore Campbell National Minority Mental Health Month

In May 2008 the U.S. House of Representatives proclaimed July as Bebe Moore Campbell National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month in order to enhance public awareness of mental illness and mental illness among minorities.  This Town Hall Meeting will highlight minority mental health issues and will focus on how NAMI advocates can foster awareness and advocacy. Additionally, this meeting will bring together multicultural NAMI leaders and other interested convention attendees to review and celebrate progress made to date and to discuss future plans and areas in need of attention and action.  

Nancy Carter, executive director, NAMI Urban Los Angeles and member, NAMI National Board of Directors, Los Angeles, CA

Majose Carrasco, M.P.A., director, Multicultural Action Center, NAMI National, Arlington, VA

9:00am – 12:00pm NAMI Education, Training & Peer Support Center Institute
9:00am – 12:00pm

Special Interest Networking Sessions

  • Veterans and CIT: A Natural Partnership 
    The topic of this year’s special networking session will be veterans and Crisis Intervention Teams (CIT). This session will be an opportunity for advocates from around the country to meet and discuss their CIT programs, and specifically how they include veterans’ issues in their community partnerships and training. The session will feature Major Sam Cochran, founder of the Memphis CIT program, as well as speakers who are working on the cutting edge of incorporating veterans into CIT.
  • Rural Interest Group Networking Session
    The Rural Interest Group (RIG) formed at the 2008 NAMI convention will report on its efforts in the last year to raise awareness about underserved populations in rural and frontier areas and the cultural differences within those communities.  The RIG will identify the priorities it has established relative to barriers faced by rural communities and proposals that support innovations for adapting NAMI programs to make them more appropriate for rural communities.  There will be an opportunity to hear additional input from NAMI members to help refine the work of the RIG. 
  • Parents of Adult Children
    This will be a meeting of parents of adult children with mental illnesses. There will be opportunities to share our family stories, especially the ones that taught us what we needed most to learn about caring for a family member who has a mental illness. Come and connect with other parents, share your concerns and advice, and listen to others.
  • Daughters and Sons 
    This session is an opportunity for daughters and sons who have a parent with psychiatric illness to meet, discuss resources, and participate in collaborative activities.  Daughters and sons who are looking for peers and/or are interested in developing resources and support groups in their local NAMI affiliate are especially encouraged to attend.  Extended family members (parents, grandparents, spouses, siblings) who are supporting or taking care of children while also helping the parent with a psychiatric illness may find this networking session helpful as well.
  • Borderline Personality Disorder
    Current, up-to-date information will be presented on borderline personality disorder (BPD) diagnosis, treatment, and research. Discussion and interaction will follow targeting coping and communication skills for families and consumers based on the National Education Alliance for Borderline Personality Disorder's (NEA-BPD) Family Connections program.
  • Children and Adolescents
    Join the  NAMI National Child & Adolescent Action Center and other NAMI leaders and families from around the country as we share ideas and projects related to children’s mental health.  This is your opportunity to share the great work that you are doing and to hear from NAMInational on project updates and future directions in children’s advocacy.
  • Consumer Council Networking

    This year’s networking session will be organized into three distinct time blocks.

    9:00am – 10:00am  -  Orientation for Consumer Council Members

    10:00am – 11:00am -
    Consumer Council Tool Kit

    11:00am – 12:00pm - General Networking
  • FaithNet
10:00am - 12:00pm

STAR Center Meeting
Experiencing Diversity: Facing the Present Moment 
The NAMI STAR Center presents an experiential workshop intended to provide participants with an opportunity to re-discover the richness and challenges of diversity work as an ongoing task for recovery, mental health and wellness. Through evocatively presented information, facilitated questions for inner reflection, and guided discussion, participants can come to a deeper appreciation of the emotional, practical, social, and policy/program implications involved in engaging in effective diversity work. The session will include brief information on the STAR Center’s mission and work, select web sites and helpful resources, and planning tools for integrating diversity work into personal and programmatic efforts

11:00am - 12:00pm

Federal Legislative Briefing 
(presented by NAMI policy staff)

11:00am - 2:00pm Exhibit Hall and NAMILand Open
12:00pm - 2:00pm Lunch Break (On Your Own)
2:00pm - 3:30pm

Opening Plenary

PARITY: A Pathway to a Healthy Future
NAMI and its allies have fought for well over a decade for parity – ensuring that insurance covers treatment for mental illness on the same basis that it covers treatment for physical illness.  Last October, this long-fought battle was finally won. Join us as we salute some of the champions in Congress who made this milestone possible and explore what it will mean for the future health of individuals with mental illness and their family members and treatment professionals.

Paul David Wellstone, Jr., Co-founder, Wellstone Action  

Pete Earley, author of Crazy: A Father’s Search through America’s Mental Health Madness

Fred Frese, Ph.D., member, NAMI National Board of Directors, Hudson, OH

The Bebe Moore Campbell Memorial Award and the Richard T. Greer Advocacy Award will be presented during this session.

3:45pm - 5:30pm Candidate Speeches

5:45pm - 6:30pm

Group One State Caucuses

6:45pm - 7:30pm

Group Two State Caucuses

7:00pm – 8:30pm NAMI Connection Support Group
8:00pm – 9:30pm

Special Performance by Joyce Cooling(Internationally known cool jazz recording artist and active NAMI member Joyce Cooling will perform live at this very special event.)



contact Connie Schantz or (703) 524-7600


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