NAMI Northside Education

Family-to-Family classes are currently being taught in 2 locations. Contact Beth Sanders for more information:

Educational meetings are held most months on the 4th Monday (except holidays – always check our Calendar) in room 258 at Dunwoody United Methodist Church. Refreshments available starting at 7:00. Program begins at 7:30.

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Some of our previous speakers include:

NAMI Smarts Program

Briggs & Associates

Summit Counseling.

Sally Atwell, Benefits Navigator.

Jon Toppen with Tapestry Development Group. 

Kim Jones, Executive Director of NAMI GA and Faye Taylor president, spoke at our September meeting and updated us on all of the exciting things happening at NAMI Georgia and around the state. 

Our May speaker was from – NobisWorks

S. Derek Gage, Attorney at Law, previously spoke on  Mental Health and Criminal Defense.

Attorneys Anjel Burgess & Larry Christensen presented information regarding Social Security Disability benefits for adults and children as well as Guardianships.

Adoption: the Rest of the Story. Leslie Pate MacKinnon, LCSW

Mark Biernath, special needs attorney.

Boadie Dunlop, MD is the Director of the Mood and Anxiety Disorders Program at Emory University, where he has conducted over 50 clinical trials for depression, bipolar disorder, PTSD, and anxiety disorders.  He gave a presentation on clinical trials in psychiatry: how they work and what patients need to know before deciding whether to participate.

Bipolar Babes

Jeff Sanders, MD, PhD, psychiatrist within Outpatient Psychiatric Services at Emory/Grady Memorial Hospital.

Attorney Derek Gage spoke on “Legal Defense of Individuals with Mental Illness”
Laura Nichols, Emory Wesley Woods Hospital
Gina Little from Dream Power Therapeutic Equestrian Center
GCAL – Paul Crolley & Tekesha Smith
Grady ACT program
iResearch Atlanta – Annette Taylor
Community Friendship Inc.
Terry Mercer – Legal Shield
Dr James Fugedy Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS)
Pat Strode, CIT

Emory’s Dr. Rakofsky’s Mental Health Care and the Role of Family presentation (PowerPoint download)

We invite knowledgeable speakers who come and share information with our members and guests on mental health issues and ways to help our loved ones living with mental illness. These meetings are free and open to everyone. Contact Susie Kyle: for more information.  

NAMI Northside Atlanta currently offers several educational offerings serving different individuals and their needs. See what is right for you!

NAMI Northside Atlanta Support and Workshops

NAMI Family-to-Family is a free, 12-week course for families, partners and friends of individuals with serious mental illness taught by trained NAMI family members and caregivers of individuals living with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, major depression, anxiety disorders, OCD, PTSD and borderline personality disorder. The course goal is to guide family members to emotional understanding, healing, insight and action. Allowing family members to move at their own emotional pace means we do not push the “intellectual/cognitive” learning (head) part of the course, but rather pay attention to the integration of self-selected knowledge and “emotional understanding” (heart).

Described by many family members as life-changing, this course provides caregivers with communication and problems-solving techniques, coping strategies and the self-care skills needed to deal with their loved one’s mental illness as well as the impact on their family.

Since the fall of 2006, NAMI Northside has completed 11 Family-to-Family classes at Peachtree Presbyterian Church and two at the Dunwoody United Methodist Church, with more scheduled.

NAMI Peer-to-Peer is a unique experiential learning program for people with mental illness who are interested in establishing and maintaining their recovery.

Peer-to-Peer consists of ten two-hour units and is taught by a team of two trained mentors who are personally experienced at living well with mental illness. Participants come away from the course with a binder of materials and other resources: an advanced directive to help identify telltale thoughts, feelings, behavior or events that may ward of impending relapse and to organize for intervention; mindfulness exercises to help focus and calm feelings; and survival skills for working with providers and the general public.

NAMI Basics is the new signature education program for parents and other caregivers of children and adolescents living with mental illnesses. The NAMI Basics course is taught by trained teachers who are the parent or other caregivers of individuals who developed the symptoms of mental illness prior to the age of 13 years.

  • Recognition of mental illness as a continuing traumatic event for the child and the family
  • Sensitivity to the subjective emotional issues faced by family caregivers and well children in the family
  • Recognition of the need to help ameliorate the day-to-day objective burdens of care and management
  • Gaining confidence and stamina for what can be a lifelong role of family understanding and support
  • Empowerment of family caregivers as effective advocates for their children

The goals of the NAMI Basics course are: to give the parent/caregiver the basic information necessary to take the best possible care of their child, their family and themselves, to help the parent/caregiver cope with the impact that mental illness has on the child living with the illness and the entire family; to provide tools for the parent/caregiver to use even after completing the program that will assist them in making the best decisions possible for the care of the child.

Family Connections is designed by the National Educational Alliance for Borderline Personality Disorder (NEA-BPD) specifically for family members who have a loved one with BPD. The primary purpose of the course is to help improve family members quality of life through education and family skills. Modeled after the highly successful National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Family-to-Family course. Family Connections covers current research on BPD, evidence-based therapy skills, relationships and communication, validation skills, problem management skills and social support.

Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) is characterized by intense and stormy relationships, low self-esteem, self-sabotaging acts, mood fluctuations and impulsivity. The hallmark of BPD is emotional dysregulation (severe difficulty managing emotions under stress).

Go to to find out about more educational programs offered by NAMI.

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