Series helps families whose children experience emotional difficulties

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The NAMI Yolo chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness is offering the NAMI Basics education program, designed for parents and other caregivers of children and youth who experience emotional and behavioral difficulties. Classes will be held in Woodland over three Saturdays: May 5-19, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. (two sessions each day).

Taught by volunteers with lived experience (parents who have “been there”), this course provides critical strategies for taking care of children with mental illness. Participants learn about the illnesses that are causing those behavioral difficulties, and the critical role that families plan in their treatment.

The course will cover attention deficit disorder, major depression, bipolar disorder, conduct disorder, oppositional defiant disorder, anxiety disorders, obsessive compulsive disorder, childhood schizophrenia, disordered eating, self-mutilation (cutting) and substance abuse disorders.

The course does not specifically address developmental disabilities, autism, brain injuries or other permanently disabling disorders. Information about these disorders is included in the Additional Resources sections of the course.

Participants learn about current treatments, including evidence-based therapies, medications and their side effects. An overview of the public mental health care, school and juvenile justice systems is given. The course addresses management of crises, problem solving and effective communication.

In addition to discussions of the clinical treatment of mental illnesses, guidance will be given on locating appropriate supports and services within the community. Participants gain the knowledge and skills needed to cope effectively with the impacts that mental illness has on their child and family as they gain tools for making the best decisions possible for their child’s care.

During the class, participants also learn to take care of themselves and to handle stress as they develop the confidence and stamina to support their child with compassion. They also gain an understanding of the challenges and impact of mental health conditions on the entire family and learn how to advocate for their child’s rights at school and in health care settings.

Through the support of its members, NAMI Yolo offers these classes at no cost to participants. Pre-registration is required.

For more information go to www.namiyolo.org. To register call 530-756-8181 or email friends@namiyolo.org

 

 

 

 

 

 

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