NAMI-Finger Lakes is the Ithaca, NY affiliate of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI).
In 1986, our founder, Jean Walters, of Ithaca, NY, welcomed families to her home for support and education about mental illness. Hear her tell the history of NAMI FL’s beginnings in the audio provided below.
We seek to:
- Support families and friends of people diagnosed with major mental illnesses
- Educate families and the public about mental illness
- Advocate for families and their ill relative
NAMI-Finger Lakes is a non-profit organization of volunteers. All programming volunteers are trained and certified by NAMI and have loved ones living with mental illness. As a result, we’re very familiar with local human services for people experiencing and living in recovery from mental illnesses. Our volunteers and staff can share their knowledge and experience with you.
Our programs include:
- Confidential support groups
- NAMI Finger Lakes HELP Line staffed by experienced, local volunteers- Call 607-273-2462 for support
- Support for family members who have loved ones in Cayuga Medical Center’s Behavioral Services Unit
- Family-to-Family – an eight week program to help families better understand their loved one’s experience with mental illness.
- NAMI Basics – a six week program for Caregivers of children up to age 22
- In Our Own Voice– Free presentations that change attitudes, assumptions and ideas about people with mental health conditions. Speakers provide a personal perspective of mental health conditions, and talk openly about what it’s like to have a mental health condition.
- Family and Friends presentations– A two hour program that informs people who have loved ones with a mental health condition how to best support them. It’s also an opportunity to meet other people in similar situations and gain community support.
- NAMI Homefront- Education for families of Veterans and active Servicemembers– A free 6-session educational program for families, caregivers and friends of military service members and veterans with mental health conditions.
- Family Forum– presentations and discussions regarding mental health programs, services, and advocacy. Find past programs on the NAMI Finger Lakes YouTube Channel.
- Ending the Silence Presentations for Youth, Faculty and Families
- Weekly NAMI FL Newsletter- click to receive our newsletter in your inbox
- A lending library of resource materials about mental illness
- Speakers who will talk with your group, class, or community organization about mental illness and its impact on families and our community
In addition, NAMI FL maintains a Crisis File of local, State and national organizations and services of need and interest to families impacted by mental illness. We can also help you navigate the many concerns surrounding mental illness such as:
- Psychiatric care in Ithaca and in surrounding communities
- Missing and homeless relatives
- Dual-diagnosis (diagnosed with mental illness & addicted to alcohol/drugs)
- Mental illness and the criminal justice system
- Estate planning for families with loved ones who experience mental health conditions
- Avoiding other health problems caused by mental illness
Please contact us – we are a safe harbor for your family’s struggle with mental illness.