The National Alliance on Mental Illness Family-to-Family Education Program for families of individuals diagnosed with a serious mental illness will begin March 30 in Warrenton.
NAMI Piedmont will sponsor the free, 12-week series of classes. Registration is required by March 28.
The course is designed to help family members understand and support their loved one with serious mental illnesses, while maintaining their own well-being. It covers topics such as the causes, diagnoses and treatment of these illnesses. The classes also focus on coping skills, handling crises, community resources, problem solving techniques, communication and advocacy.
The family member must be a spouse, sibling, parent, grandparent or significant other. The serious mental illnesses the loved ones should be diagnosed with are major depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, borderline personality disorder and PTSD. Panic, anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorders are also included.
The Family-to-Family curriculum was developed by Joyce Burland, Ph.D. She is both a mental health professional and family member of an individual suffering from a serious mental illness. All volunteer teachers of the program must be a family member who has taken intense training to be a course instructor.
Kathy and Bob Weigel will be co-teaching the Family-to-Family Program beginning on Thursday, March 30. It is limited to 20 individuals.