NAMI Southeast Minnesota is an affiliate of NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness), the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization dedicated to building better lives for the millions of people affected by mental illness, like Christina.
Christina was first diagnosed with an anxiety disorder in 4th grade. Thirty years later, she was used to it being a part of her life. It was always there, but she thought the worst was behind her.
Then, out of nowhere, severe anxiety hit again and devasted her life. She saw her world crumble around her. She couldn't work. Her marriage ended. She couldn't be the active parent she was previously when it took all her energy to get out of bed.
Christina kept trying to get help, but nothing really worked. Her anxiety kept increasing despite pursuing different therapies and medications.
Then, she found NAMI Southeast Minnesota's free support groups.
Her recovery journey started slowly, but then she started adding a little more and a little more. At first, she attended weekly support groups. Then, she started volunteering in the NAMI office a couple days a week. She trained to be a support group facilitator, leading the same groups that were so instrumental to her recovery.
People at NAMI were taking notice of Christina and suggested she complete the training to be a Certified Peer Support Specialist (CPSS) in St. Paul. She did.
Christina joined the NAMI Southeast Minnesota staff in 2021 as one of the first Crisis Peer Support Specialists through NAMI's partnership with the Southeast Regional Crisis Center (SERCC).
Each year, NAMI Southeast Minnesota helps hundreds of people like Christina. Your donation makes free support groups and classes available to people with mental health conditions and their families. It helps NAMI Southeast Minnesota deliver high-quality, evidence-based education programs that challenge stigma to reduce discrimation and shame. Finally, your investment amplifies the voices of lived experience in policy discussions to prioritize mental health in all the places we live, work, learn and play.