SANTA BARBARA, Calif. — The pandemic has had a major effect on everyone.
Yet for families with loved ones dealing with a mental illness, it’s been even more of a challenge.
To help out, the National Alliance on Mental Illness, or NAMI, is offering a free Family-to-Family program.
Even people that didn’t have any issues before this started, things bubbled to the surface because of the isolation that we’ve experienced,” Mental Wellness board president Julie Solomon said.
The eight-week course is designed to help family members understand and support their loved one while maintaining their own well-being.
It will cover information on illnesses such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, major depression and other mental health conditions and is taught by trained teachers who are also family members that know what it is like to have a loved one struggling with a mental health disorder.
NAMI is the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization — dedicated to building better lives for those affected by mental health disorders.
“The pandemic has just put another layer of isolation on top of what for many people with these disorders is already an isolating existence,” NAMI Santa Barbara County president George Kaufmann said.
The Family-to-Family course will be held from Wednesday, September 22 through Wednesday, November 10th.
North county presentation will be online via ZOOM
South county presentation will be online via ZOOM or in a classroom setting depending on COVID-19 allowances. Preregistration is required.
For south county information, or to register, contact Ramona Winner, Family Advocate at 805-884-8440, ext. 3206. For north county, contact Maria Perez, or call, 805-441-3325.