Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Keep the Conversation Going

By Marin Swesey, NAMI Multicultural Action Center Program Manager

Can you believe how fast July is blowing by? There is only about a week left of National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month and it’s going strong! Some exciting things have happened and more are still planned. Here’s our mid-month update:

  • One hundred and seventy people have signed the NMMHAM pledge so far. Let’s see if we can get more in the first year of this attempt. If you haven't yet, sign it now: http://tinyurl.com/NMMHAM-pledge.
  • Martha Silva, third from right, and others in New York.
  • Nearly 400 people registered for our celebration webinar, “Our Strength and Support: Celebrating National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month,” held on July 17 in partnership with the National Network to Eliminate Disparities. Larke Huang, Director of the SAMHSA Office of Behavioral Health Equity and Mike Fitzpatrick, Executive Director of NAMI, provided welcome remarks and presenters Ramey Ko of the White House Commission on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders and Dionne Monsanto from the SIWE Project gave inspiring presentations to encourage participants to learn more about available community resources and consider best practices in self-care. If you missed it, you can watch it here.
  • Last Thursday we cohosted a Twitter Chat in partnership with SAMHSA and the Office of Minority Health on multicultural mental health. Folks from many different organizations joined. See what all we were talking about by checking out the hashtag #MMHChat (and keep the conversation going with #minoritymentalhealth!).
  • Help us reach 1,000 likes on our Bebe Moore Campbell National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month Facebook page! Get connected to people from around the country who are passionate about mental health in multicultural communities.

But celebrating NMMHAM doesn’t just happen on the web. Check out all the great events that have happened so far around the country. And if you’ve held an event or attended one that isn’t listed, make sure to let us know at MACenter@nami.org.

  • July 2: Martha Silva, leader of Latino outreach and programs for NAMI New Jersey en EspaƱol, hosted a resource table and welcomed individuals for a workshop about depression Mexican Consulate in New York (pictured right).
  • July 10: In partnership with the International Institute for Indigenous Resource Management and the Denver American Indian Commission, NAMI Colorado board member, Elicia Goodsoldier, hosted a film screening and workshop event to discuss historic trauma among American Indians.
  • Attendees of the picnic hosted by NAMI Latino de Utah.
  • July 17: NAMI Latino de Utah, an outreach group of NAMI Utah, hosted a community-wide picnic which featured a flash mob dance and reading of the NMMHAM proclamation of Gov. Gary Herbert by Senator Luz Robles. See more event pictures on Facebook and hear the radio promotion of the event here.
  • July 17: NAMI New Jersey’s Chinese American Mental Health Outreach and South Asian Mental Health Awareness programs held a discussion of mental health medications for individuals from area Asian American communities to learn more about treating anxiety, depression and other mood and thought disorders with a focus on side effects and drug and herbal interactions and other safety concerns, focusing particularly on common treatments utilized among South Asian and Chinese communities.
  • July 19: NAMI Urban Greater Cincinnati Network on Mental Illness held a luncheon at the Cincinnati State Midwest Culinary Institute to honor the month and Bebe Moore Campbell by sharing her personal stories and advocacy for individuals living with serious mental illness.
  • July 19: The fifth annual Minority Mental Health Awareness Month Breakfast was held by NAMI Augusta (Ga.) in Evans, Ga. with the theme “Relationships Strengthen Teamwork”. Find more information, including speakers and special guests here.
  • July 20: NAMI Lexington's Multicultural Action Committee MAC DIVAS & DADIS celebrated by featuring NAMI’s Sharing Hope program with workshop, “As We Share Hope Surrounding Mental Health Recovery from Cultural Viewpoints,” at the Lexington Central Library.
  • July 26: NAMI Minnesota has organized a panel to be featured on a local R&B radio station at 6:00 p.m. to discuss mental health and criminal justice-related issues among African Americans.

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