final masthead
National Alliance on Mental Illness, California State Organization
Welcome Members and Affiliates
We welcome your ideas for topics to cover, your feedback on issues that face consumers, families, and providers across the state. Contact us at
What's New at the NAMI California 2010 Annual Conference
We're counting down the weeks to the NAMI California Annual Conference! The conference will be held on August 27 & 28, 2010 at the San Francisco Airport Marriott, 1800 Old Bayshore Highway Burlingame, California 94010.You can still register.

Joshua Walters
This year's conference will present events and special features. Here are just a few of the details:

This year's entertainment program includes music, comedy, and a 50-50 raffle. Internationally acclaimed HBO performer, poet, educator, comic and mental health advocate Joshua Walters leads the bill. The Los Angeles Mental Health Choir will sing gospel-style original music and lyrics. And the Jefferson Transitional Group will perform their play Scrambled Eggs. Click this link for more entertainment details.

Remembrance and Honor Celebration: For the first time, you may may bring recognition to a family member, volunteer, friend, or professional who contributed to your journey of hope, recovery, support or education, past or present. For information on this evening event, click here.

Assistance for the Hearing Impaired: First-row seating at all ballroom events and complementary assistive listening devices are available. Please call Jessica Cruz, NAMI California, at 916-567-0163 to reserve your set or email your request.

Plenary Speakers Topics Announced for NAMI California 2010 Annual Conference
The Friday opening welcome at the NAMI California 2010 Annual Conference will be made by local officials and Brenda Scott, President, NAMI California. Brief opening addresses will be made by Dr. Steven Mayberg of CDMH, and Dr. Trula M. LaCalle, Executive Director for NAMI California.

This year's keynote and plenary speakers and their topics include:

Mariette Hartley

"Breaking the Silence, Stigma Reduction"

"The Road to Recovery from Schizophrenia is Paved with Social Skills Training"
"Making Recovery Real: What are Recovery Based Services"

"Reducing Health Disparities"

"Mental Healthcare Reforms at the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation"

"It Is All In Your Head"

Spanish-language Program: Join us for presentations and discussions on recovery, medication and treatment, law enforcement, family-to-family, and peer-to-peer. There will be live mariachi music and refreshments. Click here for more details.
NAMI Central Region Meeting
Russ Sempell and Patrice Maniaci (NAMI Kern), Trula LaCalle, (NAMI California), Connie Brooks and Mary Lou Brauti-Minkler (NAMI Fresno) and John Aguirre (NAMI California)
central regional
The Central Region met in Modesto on June 22. The region represents 20 counties covering all of the Central Valley as far north as Placer County, as far south as Kern County and to the California eastern border. The primary purpose of the meeting was to provide NAMI Affiliates an avenue to learn from each other and share resources. Sharing ideas, experience, and resources enables Affiliates to grow stronger. The secondary purpose was to put Affiliates in closer touch with their state organization. By communicating with its Affiliates, the state organization learns of local needs and successes while reminding Affiliates that their state organization is working on their behalf.

The dialogue at the meeting was lively and enthusiastic. In the face of enormous challenges for funding and increased demand for services, NAMI Affiliates are finding creative means to solve problems and build membership. NAMI California is gathering their innovative solutions and will be setting up a system whereby Affiliates can more readily access each other's proven methods and materials. Together we are discovering that NAMI Affiliates can join forces within and across county lines to develop programs and events that they would be far less able to produce on their own. The Central Region was grateful for this opportunity and has asked the Executive Director of NAMI California, Trula M. LaCalle, Ph.D., to arrange for a regional meeting each six months.

Twenty-five people were in attendance. The meeting was hosted by Lynn Padlo and Joyce Plis (NAMI Stanislaus) with assistance from Nancy Smith (NAMI San Joaquin). Jennifer Denning of Bristol-Myers-Squibb sponsored the catering and provided an update on national and state trends in the use of medication formularies.

NAMI California Criminal Justice Workgroup
criminal justiceMark Gale
NAMI California Board of Directors, First Vice-President, NAMI California Government Affairs Committee, Criminal Justice Workgroup, Chair

Our advocacy for best practices and the decriminalization of persons with serious mental illness is a major factor in the implementation of such programs around the state.  Thank you all for your diligent and tireless efforts and the great work you are doing in your communities.
We invite you to check out the new revisions to our CriminalJustice page on the NAMI California web site. A listing of every CIT program and Mental Health Court in California is now posted under a new heading "Tracking California's Best Practices." Submit your ideas on how we can track progress on other best practices to
Our efforts in the last twelve months at the state level have been focused on collaboration with the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR). There are now Inmate Mental Health links on six Reception Center prison websites to provide Inmate Mental Health Information Forms for each prison with instructions, in both English and Spanish. We continue to encourage CDCR to complete the project with full implementation in all 12 Reception Centers.

The forms will be posted on the NAMI California website organized by county for easy access. NAMI California was invited to participate in a CDCR survey and stakeholder meeting in February on parolee mental health ensuring that our perspectives were heard. We are also engaged with our mental health community partners in coping with the challenges of prisoners with mental illness being released back to the community.
The Judicial Council's Task Force for Criminal Justice Collaboration on Mental Health Issues is completing the final draft of its report after two years of hard work.  Northern California and Southern California meetings are planned this summer as part of the public comment period.
The long journey for Laura's Law implementation is picking up speed. Nevada County's program is reporting impressive positive outcomes and Los Angeles County began their Assisted Outpatient Program (AOT) this year. Development of a program to help those most in need in San Francisco may become a reality due to the efforts of NAMI San Francisco affiliate members, long-time NAMI advocate and Treatment Advocacy Center Board Member Carla Jacobs, and the support of San Francisco Supervisor Michela Alioto-Pier who introduced a resolution for implementation to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors. Advocates in other counties are also working towards implementation.

nationalCalifornians Attend NAMI National Convention
More than 40 members of California affiliates and NAMI California staff attended the 2010 NAMI National Convention this month. Special sessions included speakers on recovery and Federal health reform, networking, FaithNet, consumer programs, Ask-the Doctor sessions, Spanish-language programs, discussions on issues affecting children and young adults, and programming for veterans.

California visitors took in symposiums on the new Parity Law, Improving Outcomes, Cultural Diversity, Affordable Housing, Recovery and Neuroscience, Updating the DSM, and the groundbreaking NIMH RAISE Study in of early and aggressive treatment in reducing the symptoms of schizophrenia. Former #1-world-ranked tennis player Cliff Richey was
honored for his work in advocacy.
P2P trainingPeer-To-Peer
California NAMI Affiliates are working harder than ever to ensure that consumers have access to education and support and it's showing! We've seen enormous growth in Peer-to-Peer in California this year.
In January and February, NAMI California hosted three Peer-to-Peer Mentor Trainings in Los Angeles, Santa Clara, and Shasta Counties. A total of 42 new Peer-to-Peer Mentors graduated and we welcomed 5 new affiliates to the program!

The 3rd Edition of Peer-to-Peer was released by NAMI National in February and has received incredibly positive feedback from both Mentors and students. California's first 3rd-Edition Mentor training was held in San Francisco in May and seventeen new Mentors were certified.

Last year, NAMI California was able to host a Training of Trainers to build capacity in our local affiliates. As a result, there were local trainings sponsored by  NAMI San Luis Obispo, NAMI Orange County, and NAMI San Diego. NAMI San Diego also hosted the first Persona a Persona training in California. Local trainings are an excellent way to build more sustainable programs and can be done for about the cost of a Peer-to-Peer class.

The program has now been implemented in 44 Affiliates in 27 Counties in California. We welcomed NAMI Chino Valley, NAMI Pomona Valley, NAMI South Central Los Angeles, and NAMI Mendocino to the ever-expanding Peer-to-Peer family.

Beginning July 1, 2010, NAMI California will be offering local affiliates some new tools to help measure outcomes of the Peer-to-Peer Course. In addition to measuring the success of the program, we will also be collecting important demographic information. NAMI California will provide all interested local affiliates with these tools, will collect and analyze all data, and provide participating affiliates with bi-yearly dashboard reports. These reports will not only help participating affiliates improve their program, but also help with seeking additional funding.

For more information on the Peer-to-Peer Outcomes Measurement and to get these valuable tools, or to learn how your affiliate can sponsor a local training, please contact Becks Hawkins, Consumer Programs Coordinator, at (916) 595-3198 or by email to

working wellIt has been a busy and exciting time for the Working Well Together (WWT) program that is funded by the Mental Health Services Act through a contract from the State Department of Mental Health. NAMI California has the responsibility of developing a statewide Inventory and Analysis of Consumer and Family Member Employment, Hiring and Retention Programs which highlights "best practices" throughout the state. NAMI California is also providing technical assistance to the twenty counties of the Central Region of the state: Alpine, Amador, Calaveras, El Dorado, Fresno, Inyo, Kings, Madera, Mariposa, Merced, Mono, Placer, Sacramento, San Joaquin, Stanislaus, Tulare, Tuolumne, Sutter-Yuba, and Yolo.

Technical assistance provided to counties affirms wellness and recovery from mental illness in our efforts to ensure public mental health agencies are prepared to recruit, hire, train, support and retain multicultural clients, family members and parents/caregivers as employees.

John Aguirre is the TAC Coordinator for NAMI California and has  completed 21 site visits since he started with WWT in January 2010 and has become a familiar presence at various regional meetings bringing the consumer and family member "lived experience" perspective and voice on behalf of WWT and NAMI California
Family to FamilyFamily to Family News

The end of June completes our 2009-2010 year of Family to Family trainings. With a total of 165 graduates in Family to Family education or support group training, NAMI California will continue to reach out to family members struggling to understand their loved one who lives with a mental illness. As we teach F2F classes and lead support groups, we continue to promote understanding, support, and acceptance!  

The following is some of the feedback we have received from participants in our Family to Family 12-week classes this last spring:

NAMI East Bay: I am highly impressed by the devotion of the teachers.  Without their hard work and dedication, this course would not be possible. I look forward to learning more. Knowledge is power indeed.

NAMI San Diego: This was a terrific course. I learned much more than I ever knew about mental illness  despite having college and post-graduate degrees.  It is a "must do" course for anyone dealing with a loved one suffering from one of these condition. And another San Diego participant: I no longer ride my daughter's roller coaster and have become mentally healthier.

NAMI Sonoma: Huge help! The educational materials and learning environment, along with the opportunity to both hear and tell our stories was exactly the healing we needed.

NAMI California received the 2010 updates of the Teacher Manuals in March and we quickly distributed the e-file of them to all teachers and affiliates who have a Family to Family program.  Beginning the middle of May we then mailed hard copies of the updates for NAMI affiliates to distribute to their F2F teachers. So far, we have distributed over 400 copies of the updates to 46 affiliates.

Again, congratulations to our graduates and thank you to all affiliates who offer a Family to Family program. We look forward to a productive 2010-2011 fiscal year.

Lynn Cathy
Family to Family Program Director

NAMI California MHSA Survey
Thank you to everyone who participated in NAMI California's Survey on the Impact of the Mental Health Services Act. A total of 87 respondents participating from 36 counties shed light on the perspectives of some of our most-involved members. The responses by survey participants draw attention to significant factors pointing to uneven implementation, such as geography, the economic downturn, and a multi-tiered system. This survey report should be viewed as a tool for discussion, as it highlights both areas of success and disappointment. Read NAMI California's Survey Report.

MHSA Evaluation
The MHSA evaluation committee has secured a contractor, Resource Development Associates (RDA), to begin the first phase of evaluation of the MHSA: defining the scope of work. RDA has completed the work of researching how the evaluation will be structured. Due to the advocacy of statewide community partners, a revised draft is now being circulated, allowing time for further discussion on the Evaluation Request for Proposal before it goes to the Commission for approval in July.

Statewide Projects
At the state level, we are interacting with a new entity, a Joint Powers Authority acting on behalf of counties, called the California Mental Health Services Administration (CalMHSA). At this level, it is our responsibility to represent NAMI California consumers and family members to prioritize strategic actions for the statewide strategic plans addressing Stigma & Discrimination, Suicide Prevention, and Student Mental Health. We now attend monthly board meetings of CalMHSA and will be attending meetings of statewide stakeholders that we anticipate will be held in July.

The other two options are for counties to assign their funds to the state DMH or to engage in a multi-county collaborative. The county decision regarding the assignment of funds for these projects must be made with the input of community stakeholders. See the guidelines.

Training and Technical Assistance
Training and technical assistance had been originally slated as a statewide project, but in July 2008 the MHSOAC agreed to release the funds to the counties for local administration. The purpose of this training is to strengthen partnerships and capacity within local communities through, e.g., community organizations, education, social services and law enforcement. In addition, much of this training was intended to utilize the lived experience of consumers and family members. We brought up the subject of tracking these funding requests at the June Funding and Policy Committee meeting..We hope this will help focus attention on ensuring that training and technical assistance funds are used to build capacity among local community partners.

MHSA Partners Forum
The MHSA Partners Forum is a collaborative communication venue between government and community stakeholders. NAMI California hosted this forum on May 5, 2010. Agenda items included the promotion of using MHSA funds for 1) consumer and family run services, including NAMI programs, 2) Working Well Together, the collaborative between NAMI California, UACF, The California Network of Mental Health Clients and CiMH which promotes consumer and family member employment in the system, 3) Peer Run Programs and Support; and 4) Crisis Residential Programs as recovery-oriented alternatives to hospitalization.

As a result of the discussion between community and government partners at this meeting, it was decided that interested organizations would collaborate on a letter to the County Mental Health Directors Association emphasizing the importance of increasing the use of consumer and family member driven services, like those outlined above, in challenging fiscal times. This letter was reported to be well-received by the CMHDA governing board and the issue will be taken up in the July All Directors Meeting.

Under the Dome
Frances Tibbits, co-chair of Government Affairs

Thanks to Senate Pro Tem Chairman Darrell Steinberg. The Senator, a long time advocate for mental health funding and justice, is sponsoring SB1392 to make state funding to county mental health programs more efficient, so counties can plan more effectively.  SB 1600 would ensure insurance coverage parity for mental health. Follow the bills, or you can thank Senator Steinberg by email from his website or mailing him at State Capitol, Room 205, Sacramento, CA  95814.

Get to Know Your Legislators, Educate Candidates
You can help bring greater attention to our issues by forming relationships with your local  legislators and their staffs. Local events where the legislator is speaking or participating are a great place to make your interest in mental health known. Be prepared to give your message briefly, or ask a question, with passion, but without heat. Build your profile by staying in touch between emergency legislative issues. Letters and emails help, as does staying in touch between emergencies. Staffers can be influential, so take opportunities to inform and educate them.

Election season is a good time to educate and inform candidates.  Once in office, new legislators and governors will be overwhelmed, but now they have our attention. At candidate forums ask candidates their positions on mental health issues and funding.  You can volunteer in a campaign and later remind the legislator later that you did.

Your legislators' websites show what legislation they sponsor, support or oppose.  Online or by phone,  you can sign up for their newsletters and send them emails and messages.  Most hold community meetings (definitely fundraisers) where you can participate.

Check for listings.
NAMI Los Angeles South Central
south central
The Los Angeles South Central Affiliate participated the Annual Tea Party Fundraiser with the Southeast Los Angeles Police Department with Officers Lucia McKenzie and Estevan Cifuentes. Enititled "Tea in our Village," the event asked all participants to decorate their own tables. There were only three awards given for decorations and NAMI Los Angeles South Central won the prize for the "Most Whimsical" entry.

NAMI Orange County
NAMI Orange County is currently offering Family-to-Family in English, Spanish, and Vietnamese. The Korean translation of Family to Family is complete and bilingual teachers have been trained. Classes in Korean will begin this summer.

The Farsi translation will not be far behind, and an Arabic translation should be completed by the end of the year. The affiliate plans to have classes in Farsi available this fall. Translations are being provided by Korean Community Services and Access California Services, and paid for MHSA funds. 

Family-to-Family translations will be available to all NAMI affiliates. For more information please email:

NAMI North Coastal

Over the period of the past 12 months, the $10,000 grant from the Tri-City Health Foundation of Oceanside, CA, has enabled theNAMI  North Coastal affiliate to give 217 IOOV presentations to an estimated 600-700 persons at 21 different venues within the north San Diego County area.  Presentations were made to area hospitals with behavioral health units and were expanded to churches, rehabilitation centers, community colleges, fire and police departments, mental health service providers, homeless shelters, men and women's sober living homes and others.

Future plans include presentations to families of those who are in custody in local detention centers. Although NAMI North Coastal did not receive a grant for 2010-11, it will continue to offer the IOOV program to the extent that its budget will allow.

NAMI Sonoma County
Bill Simon, PhD, Program Coordinator for NAMI Sonoma County, provided a training for Sonoma County Main Adult Detention Facility Mental Health Unit Correctional Deputies on Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). This training included definition of the disorder, causes, treatment and how to deal with inmates that are manifesting PTSD symptoms.

NAMI Sonoma County also conducted seven BLOC Trainings for all Correctional Deputies and Sergeants working in the Sonoma County Main Adult Detention Facility and the North County Detention Facility. Each of the seven trainings were four hours in length and covered In Our Own Voice, Family Panel, NAMI Programs and Services, and Community Mental Health Resources. A total of 109 Correctional Deputies and Sergeants received this training

NAMI East San Gabriel Valley
NAMI East San Gabriel Valley has expanded, adding a Spanish-speaking care and share in El Monte. A Spanish Family to Family, run by Julio and Theresa Celado, sparked interest in sponsoring the October WALK. The affiliate already has a NAMI On Campus Walk out of East L.A. Junior College, run by Wendy Liu. In Glendora, the affiliate held its first Care and Share, run by Bertha Washington, first Vice-President.

In This Issue
Conference Plenary Speakers Named
conference theme
Register Online Now!

NAMI California 2010 Annual Conference
"Lighting The Way To Recovery Together"
August 27 & 28, 2010
San Francisco Airport Marriott
1800 Old Bayshore Highway
Burlingame, CA 94010
Phone:  650-692-9100

Attention Exhibitors:
Tables are available.
For details and applications call (916) 567-0163.

Visit our Conference Page at the NAMI California website. There you'll find details on sponsorship, exhibitor information, and more details as time grows closer to August.
NAMI California
2010 Annual Conference Corporate Sponsors












Alameda Alliance for Health
NAMI San Mateo
UBS Financial Services


NAMI California's Tree of Tribute
tree of tribute
Each year many donors elect to give a gift in celebration of an event, in honor of a special individual or in memory of a loved one.

The Tree of Tribute formalizes this tradition by providing a lasting acknowledgement
for individuals who are remembered, individuals who are honored or have an enduring record of a significant celebration. 
Gifts in Celebration, in Honor or in Memory

Gifts of $500 or more will be eligible for an engraved leaf on the Tree of Tribute or an engraved stone at the base of the tree.

$500 - Bronze leaf
$1,000 - Silver leaf
$2,000 - Gold leaf
$3,000 -- Small stone
$5,000 - Large stone

Major Donors

I California thanks the following for their very generous contributions of $500 or more.

Humanitarian: $5,000 - $15,000
The Commu
nity Foundation, Riverside, CA
Mitch Francis, (location withheld on request)

Patron:  $
2,500 - $4,999

Benefactor:  $1,000 - $2,499
Rita Jean Boppana, Playa Del Rey, CA
Attias Family Foundation, Los Angeles, CA
Silicon Valley Community Foundation, Mountain View, CA
Frances Tibbits, Pacific Palisades, CA
Carla Jacobs
Tustin, CA

Shareholder: $750-$999

Sponsor:  $500-$749
Teresa A Walker, San Mateo, CA
Stephen Dwelle, President, Dwelle Family Foundation, Visalia, CA
Edward Gaston, MD & Lori Zager,San Rafael, CA
Margaret C. Winrich, Kelseyville, CA
Elaine Zelnik, Berkeley, CA
Doris Crowell, Walnut Creek, CA
Jeannette Lowe, Washoe Valley, NV
Pamela Zelnik & Mark Suhr, Berkeley, CA
Elizabeth L Friedman, Los Angeles, CA
Elizabeth Chamberlain, Woodside, CA
Mr. & Mrs. Michael Aldrich, Glendale, CA
John & Beverly White, Brentwood, TN
John J Krolewski & Nadia Ghent, Irvine, CA

Mark & Theresa Gale, West Hills, CA
Frances Tibbits, Pacific Palisades, CA
Christopher & Mary Folck Family, Truckee, CA
Glen & Linda Meyer, Danville, CA
Nancy Doyle, Santa Rosa, CA
Stephen & Jacqueline Astle, San Rafael, CA
Elizabeth S. Holden, Eugene. OR
Loeb Family Foundation
Linda K. Pontious, Grass Valley, CA
Elizabeth Chamberlain, Woodside, CA
Gunnar Christiansen, MD, Santa Ana, CA
Venona & John Levine, Walnut Creek, CA
Ralph Nelson, Visalia, CA
Victoria Link, Rolling Hills Estates, CA
Mark Gale, West Hills, CA


All donations,
large and small,
are greatly appreciated by
NAMI California and help
us achieve our mission
at the state level.
state advocacy link
Contact Information
or call NAMI California
(916) 567-0163

This educational newsletter is supported, in part, by an educational grant from Lilly USA, LLC.  For further information concerning Lilly grant funding visit