NAMI Basics News


"The course helped me understand my child better. The teachers were kind and patient and I am now more kind and patient." This comment reflected the reactions of parents in Bergen County's first Basics class held this spring. Congratulations! Hudson, Mercer and Sussex also held classes in early 2013.


At the NAMINJ Annual Meeting, Martha Silva moderated a discussion about Basics and provided a packet about the program, including helpful information about innovations. Martha, a trainer and frequent Basics teacher, received the 2013 Basics award in San Antonio. Richly deserved!


At the national convention, Basics teachers from around the country discussed new methods of delivery, interesting approaches to outreach and means for using the class as a recruiting tool for membership. One Ohio affiliate asks class participants to sign onto the NAMI Walk, for example.
Children's Mental Health News

The financial struggles of the recent recession led many families to cut back on health care treatments for children with chronic physical or emotional problems, according to the journal Health Affairs. About one in every five U.S. kids fits these criteria. "Those are children who require health or related services beyond those required by children generally," said researcher Pinar Karaca-Mandic, an assistant professor of public health at the University of Minnesota. "A child with asthma would fit in this category, for example. A child with depression, ADHD or a physical limitation would also fit this definition." Researchers analyzed government data on out-of-pocket costs for families with private insurance from 2001 to 2009, finding expenses climbed steadily until 2007, when spending for generally healthy children jumped but spending for kids with special health needs dropped. Dental care and prescription medications were the services most likely to see cut backs. Christina Bethell, professor of pediatrics at Oregon Health and Science University, in Portland, said the findings demonstrate that "We're not putting a system of care together for kids that appears to be optimal, and families are struggling."   (

The TLC for Youth (Traumatic Loss Coalition)
 is an interactive, statewide network that offers collaboration and support to professionals working with school age youth. The dual mission of the TLC is excellence in both suicide prevention and trauma response assistance to schools following the sudden losses due to suicide, homicide, accident and illness. This is accomplished through county, regional and statewide conferences, training, consultation and technical assistance.  The purpose is to ensure that those working with youth from a variety of disciplines and programs have up to date knowledge about mental health issues, suicide prevention, trauma response and resiliency enhancement. Every county has a coordinator whose contact information is listed at


One of the outcomes of the June 3, 2013 Mental Health Conference, convened by VP Biden, is a website: This site contains a wealth of information for consumers, family members, professional mental health workers and educators.  Of interest to Basics' teachers and all those dedicated to children's mental health, is the $130 million dollars in the 2014 federal budget to help teachers recognize signs of mental illness, to support state programs to improve mental health and to train mental health professionals.

This quarterly Children's eNewsletter facilitated by Carol McGough, Coordinator of NAMINJ Children's Information Services, include news of NAMI Basics Education Program in New Jersey, as well as information about research and services for children and their families affected by mental illness. Send comments and suggestions to Carol at  





For more information about
NAMI Basics in NJ, contact
Carol McGough
Program Coordinator
at (973) 680-1603 or
NAMI NEW JERSEY / 1562 Route 130 / North Brunswick, New Jersey 08902 / 732-940-0991