NAMI Finger Lakes -This Week- May 8th Round Up of Events in Mental Health


This Week
NAMI Finger Lakes

May 8, 2020

Click here for a printable version of this newsletter.

In an effort to reduce the number of messages coming to your inbox, we’ve provided a roundup of the events and information for the coming week below. There are many opportunities to engage in the Mental Health community in the next week. Please share with family and friends who may need it. As we learn in Family to Family through Our Belief System and Principles…”You can’t know what no one has told you.” You may be the voice or source of sharing that makes a difference for someone who is navigating life with a loved one experiencing Mental Illness. Thank you for all the ways you support NAMI Finger Lakes. You are not alone…

NAMI Finger Lakes Help Line: (607) 273-2462

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NAMI Finger Lakes Mental Health Month

Check out our Mental Health Month Calendar for May for events like online fitness classes for all experience levels, NAMI Finger Lakes reading events,  group journaling, information to sign up for on-demand NAMI Basics classes for parents of young people living with mental illness, Mindfulness classes, video series and more. Other events will be added as they are available. You can share the calendar link with others as well!


Buffalo Street Books Partners with NAMI Finger Lakes, Advocacy Center, and Sophie Fund for Author Rocky Callen Reading  May 15th– 7:00 PM

Join us for a reading and conversation with debut YA author Rocky Callen about mental health, writing for teens, and her brand new book, A Breath Too Late, published by Holt Children’s/Macmillan on May 15th . Moderated by Isabella Ogbolumani, a rising junior at Cornell and our former YA curator. Content warning: this book deals with family abuse and suicide, and our conversation will, too. We are proud to be partnering with NAMI Fingerlakes, the Advocacy Center, and the Sophie Fund, local organizations which will provide additional resources on these subjects. Register here:

We appreciate Buffalo Street Books for partnering with us to provide a space for important conversations during Mental Health Month. Visit for all of your reading needs.

Mindfulness Mondays for Mental Health Month

Join Chris Larkin for moments of mindfulness each Monday in May at 6:00 PM online.

Chris was our guest at the NAMI FL April Family Forum, where he shared information about a mindfulness class he is teaching as part of the day program at the Greater Binghamton Health Center. Last year he developed and integrated the mindfulness class into the Hospital’s treatment program. During Mindfulness Mondays, be prepared to learn some meditation skills! Our Family Forum event was well attended and there was much interest in having Chris share more of his mindfulness practice.

These events are hosted by Chris and not held on Zoom as NAMI Finger Lakes events currently are. See the flyer here:

Please access Mindfulness Mondays with Chris Larkin on the platform with the following information:

Dial-in number (US): (978) 990-5442
Access code: 2827295#
International dial-in numbers:
Online meeting ID: christophercharleslarkin
Join the online meeting:

For additional assistance connecting to the meeting text ‘Call Me’ to the Dial-In number above and you will be called into the conference. Message and data rates may apply.
NAMI Provides a Place to Share

To read moving stories of individuals whose lives are impacted by Mental Illness, please visit NAMI’s site  You may also share your story there.

NAMI FL Readings of (Don’t) Call Me Crazy by Kelly Jensen

During Mental Health Month, we’ll offer readings on video by NAMI Finger Lakes friends and family members from the book (Don’t) Call Me Crazy: 33 Voices Start the Conversation about Mental Health, by Author Kelly Jensen. A Washington Post Best Children’s Book of 2018.  Who’s Crazy?   What does it mean to be crazy? Is using the word crazy offensive? What happens when a label like that gets attached to your everyday experiences?   To understand mental health, we need to talk openly about it. Because there’s no single definition of crazy, there’s no single experience that embodies it, and the word itself means different things–wild? extreme? disturbed? passionate?–to different people.

In (Don’t) Call Me Crazy, thirty-three actors, athletes, writers, and artists offer essays, lists, comics, and illustrations that explore a wide range of topics: their personal experiences with mental illness, how we do and don’t talk about mental health, help for better understanding how every person’s brain is wired differently, and what, exactly, might make someone crazy.   If you’ve ever struggled with your mental health, or know someone who has, come on in, turn the pages . . . and let’s get talking.  For more information about the book visit the NAMI Finger Lakes Library Thing bookshelf:
Office Of Mental Health Regional Advisory Committee Meeting-May 11, 8:30 am to 12:30 pm- Open to the public via Webex 

Please consider attending this meeting to share your and your loved one’s experiences regarding Mental Health services in Tompkins County. This meeting is very informative and collaborative.

OMH Notice:

This email contains important information for the upcoming Regional Advisory Committee, (RAC), meeting to be held on May 11, 2020, from 8:30am to 12:30pm.

The RAC is a public meeting and is designed to solicit input from Consumers/Survivors/Ex-Patients, (c/s/x), and Families of people with mental health issues.

To connect to the meeting:

  • On the day of the meeting go to:
  • Enter the meeting number in the empty field labeled join a meeting:
  • Meeting number is: 618 544 449
  • You will be asked for the session password
  • The password is: nysomh123

You will be taken to the session information page where you will need to register for the meeting.  Please scroll to the bottom of the webpage and click on the REGISTER button.  Once you have registered, you can click on the JOIN NOW button and you will be connected.  Once you are connected, you will be prompted to join the audio.  You can use internet audio, have the system call you on your phone, or you can call into the teleconference. If you would like to call into the teleconference only, please note that you will not have access to all of the features of the meeting.

Teleconference only:

US Toll Free:1-844-633-8697
Access code: 618 544 449


8:30 Meeting begins

1. Welcome and Orientation to new webex format
2. Regional Reports by Regional Advocacy Specialists
3. Census and Voter Registration presentation by League of Women Voters
4. Update on NYS response to Coronavirus
5. Breakout sessions
6. Regroup and review Breakout sessions.

12:30 Meeting ends.

Breakout questions:

  1. How have you accessed OMH services during the COVID crisis period?
  2. What are some barriers you’ve encountered to receiving OMH services during the COVID crisis period?
  3. What have you done, or seen people do, to stay connected to other people during this time?
  4. What were some of the challenges you faced during the pandemic and what did you do to overcome them?
  5. What are some of the positive things you experienced or learned during the pandemic?
  6. What is the best way to engage people who are unfamiliar or afraid of using technology?
  7. If you had a magic wand, what would you do to improve OMH in the wake of this pandemic?


Office of Mental Health Survey- Please participate to help assess the impact of COVID-19 in Tompkins County

The Office of Mental Health is conducting a survey to help us better understand the impact of COVID-19 in our community.  The results from this survey will be included in a briefing document for executive leadership at the Office of Mental Health.  Your input is critical to help us understand the needs of the community and help us prioritize policy and program decisions.  The survey is anonymous. We are looking for responses from people who receive services from OMH programs and their family members.  We recognize that some people may have trouble accessing the survey, so we’re asking service providers and advocates to reach out to individuals and families and complete the survey on their behalf.

People can also call the Office of Consumer Affairs to participate in the survey over the phone.  Our number is 518.473.6579

If language or translation services are needed, please contact Matt Canuteson, Diversity & Inclusion Officer,

Link to the survey:

Feeling stressed by the COVID-19 pandemic? You are not alone. Call the NYS Emotional Support Helpline 7 days a week, 8am-10pm at 1-844-863-9314.
Mental Health Association’s Peer Support Line – Please share!

The Jenkins Center for Hope and Recovery is closed during this period of social distancing. Beginning May 11th, the Jenkins Center staff will operate the Mental Health Association’s Peer Support Line, Monday – Friday, 9AM-2PM.
Please call 607-277-PEER (7337) to reach us!

Our Peer Supporters can offer emotional support, share knowledge and experiences, and connect you with resources.

The Peer Support line is not a crisis line. If you are in crisis, please call Suicide Prevention & Crisis Services of Ithaca at 607-272-1616 or the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255, open 24/7. You can also text the Crisis Text Line by texting HOME to 741741.

There is also a NY State COVID-19 emotional support helpline available 8AM – 10PM, 7 days a week. Just dial 1-844-863-9314 for support.

Visit for more information.




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