Last year’s NAMI Walk was attended by hundreds of concerned folks.
by Jennifer Tipton
NAMI Ventura will be holding their annual walk on May 6. The NAMI Walk raises awareness about mental health issues and it is also a fundraiser for NAMI Ventura County. The funds raised from the Walk are what makes it possible for NAMI to offer all their classes, programs, and services at no cost to anyone. Please join in at 9 am at the Ventura promenade!
The Walk is a tradition that provides an opportunity to raise awareness about the facts of mental illness, to erase the stigma associated with mental illness, and to raise funds so that NAMI Ventura County can continue to offer all of their programs and services at no cost to persons who can be helped by those services. It gives everyone a chance to show their support for all of the efforts put forth by NAMI Ventura County.
NAMI bases their mission on the principles of support, education, and advocacy for persons impacted by mental illness. They provide classes for family members, providers, and persons with a lived experience of mental illness. They also present in schools, hold support groups for family members, and provide outreach to persons who come to see persons who are in the inpatient psychiatric units in Ventura County. NAMI Ventura County also has a Peer to Peer class for persons in recovery and a Connections support group for persons in recovery as well.
David Deutsch is a licensed clinical social worker and has worked in the field of mental health for about 13 years, as the executive director at NAMI, David is also a certified addiction treatment counselor and he states that often substance abuse disorders and mental health disorders go hand in hand. David reports, “we are an organization that doesn’t charge anything to anyone, the walk is our biggest fundraiser, it’s what makes it possible for all of our programs and services to be free.” According to David there were 1,500 people last year with 84 teams and over 1,300 walkers.
The Walk in Ventura County is a fun family event with activities for children and opportunities to socialize. It also provides our community with a way for us all to come together to show our support for needed services for all persons impacted by mental illness.
To register as an individual walker or to form a team and/or to find information about sponsorships please visit www.namiventura.org.