NAMI Basics

FREE Educational Program NAMI-Basics!

The fundamentals of caring for you, your family and your child with mental illness

What is NAMI Basics?

Basics graphicNAMI 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.

The course consists of six classes, each lasting for 2 ½ hours. Classes may be offered weekly for six consecutive weeks. All instruction materials are FREE to participants.

For more information about the NAMI-Basics educational course, please contact Paloma R Bayona at NAMI Connecticut office (1.800.215.3021), or by email at

NAMI Basics is an education program designed specifically for parents and other caregivers of children and adolescents with behavioral health problems or mental illness. The six-week series of classes is offered yearly.

The course will cover information about the following disorders in children and adolescents: ADHD, Major Depression, Bipolar Disorder, Oppositional Defiant Disorder, Anxiety Disorders, Obsessive Compulsive Disorders, Schizophrenia and Substance Abuse Disorders. It will also cover coping skills, such as handling crisis and relapse; basic information about medication use in the treatment of mental illness in children; listening and communication techniques; problem solving skills; and an overview of the mental health and school systems’ roles in treating children and teens with mental illnesses.

The curriculum was written by an experienced family member mental health professional. The course will be taught by two volunteers who are parents of individuals who developed mental illness as children. “This course is a wonderful experience!” says Rebecca, one of the instructors. “It balances basic psychoeducation and skill training with emotional support, self-care and empowerment. We hope parents and other caregivers of children and adolescents with behavioral or mental illnesses will take advantage of this unique opportunity.”