Funding our Vital Services Remains Urgent
Mental health problems are very common. One in five American adults and youth are affected, so someone you know and care about suffers from a mental illness. In times of stress such as these, it's important to recognize the need to reach out for guidance and reassurance.
NAMI Southern Arizona provides education, programs and advocacy for all who are affected by mental illness. As we continue to find ways to provide these services during troubled times, your continued support enables us to make these services available to all in our community when the need is great.
Christina Bickelmann Named New NAMISA Executive Director
The Board of Directors of the National Alliance on Mental Illness of Southern Arizona (NAMI SA) is happy to announce that Christina Bickelmann was appointed to the position of Executive Director on April 16.
Prior to this appointment, Ms. Bickelmann had served in the role of NAMISA’s Communications and Events Director for nearly seven years. One of her major responsibilities in that role was to plan, execute and handle all activities related to Southern Arizona’s annual NAMIWalks. The annual walk is the organization’s largest fund raiser. Walk revenues have increased by 33% since the first walk she oversaw. During that same time, in-kind donations from local businesses and non-profit organizations increased by more than 4000%. These increases reflect Ms. Bickelmann’s success in generating community support for NAMI SA.
In addition to her NAMIWalks responsibilities, Ms. Bickelmann has been responsible for grant writing, event planning, the organization’s monthly newsletter and educational materials.
Before coming to NAMI SA, Ms. Bickelmann worked in the field of water conservation in both the public and private sectors. Her public service experience included nearly 18 years with the Arizona Department of Water Resources (ADWR). In her role there, she was responsible for program development, public events, community outreach and the development of educational materials. In addition to her work for ADWR, Ms. Bickelmann also founded and then chaired or co-chaired the annual Earth Day Festival in Southern Arizona for the first 17 years.
Former Executive Director, H. Clarke Romans, said “Christina’s efforts on behalf of NAMI Southern Arizona have been impressive. She was able to accomplish significant upgrades for our office on East 22nd Street for free or at significantly reduced costs. Her efforts reduced our utility bills and made our tight-quartered offices more efficient and pleasant for staff, volunteers and program participants. Her NAMIWalks and other fundraising efforts have been critical in the face of funding reductions by the State of Arizona.”
Board president, David Delawder said, “The Board is confident that Ms. Bickelmann will lead the organization, its staff and volunteers with a steady hand. Her compassion for the community we serve and her fundraising experience are her greatest strengths. When Covid 19 made it impossible for NAMI to hold this year’s fundraising walk, Christina transformed the event into a virtual walk. Much-needed pledges continue to come in for the May 30 virtual event.” Go to https://www.namiwalks.org/southernarizona for event details.
In reflecting on her appointment, Ms. Bickelmann said, “In the years I have worked with NAMI SA, I have been incredibly impressed with our hard-working staff and volunteers. They are NAMI SA’s biggest asset. To support their efforts to reduce the stigma associated with mental illness and to support their efforts in advocating for those who use our services, I will make training and development opportunities a priority. Of course, the development of increased funding and new revenue sources will continue to be a critical priority as well.”
Events & Announcements
NAMI’s Statement on Recent Racist Incidents
The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) today released the following statement from CEO Daniel H. Gillison, Jr., regarding recent racist incidents across the country and their impact on mental health:
“The effect of racism and racial trauma on mental health is real and cannot be ignored. The disparity in access to mental health care in communities of color cannot be ignored. The inequality and lack of cultural competency in mental health treatment cannot be ignored.
“Our nation’s African American community is going through an extremely painful experience right now, pain that has been inflicted upon this community repeatedly throughout history. We stand with all the families, friends and communities who have lost loved ones senselessly due to racism. And, with more than 100,000 lives lost to the coronavirus pandemic - disproportionately from minority communities - these recent deaths add gasoline to the fire of injustice.
“While there is much we need to do to address racism in our country, we must not forget the importance of mental health as we do so. Racism is a public health crisis.
“As the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization, it is our responsibility to serve all. While as an organization we are still early in our intentional Diversity, Equity and Inclusion journey and have much to do, we have renewed our commitment to our values. We continue to strive to deliver help and hope to all who need it.
“NAMI stands in solidarity with everyone impacted across the country. You are not alone.”
Daniel H. Gillison, Jr., Chief Executive Officer
NAMI, National Alliance on Mental Illness
Help & Hope for YOUth, the youth mental health initiative of the National Alliance on Mental Illness Southern Arizona, has launched their new website, https://helphopeforyouth.org
The Help & Hope for YOUth Alliance (formerly the Arizona Youth Mental Health Alliance) was formed in 2017 to expand youth mental health awareness and education in Pima, Cochise, Santa Cruz and Pinal Counties so that more young people will seek help when they begin experiencing symptoms.
Support for NAMISA Provided By:
Our NAMI Family Support Groups are conducted online on the first, second, third and fifth Wednesdays of the month, 6-7:30 p.m., and fourth Tuesday of the month, 7-8:30 p.m.
Call our office, 520-622-5582, or send us an email, NAMIsa@NAMIsa.org , to request an invitation to the meeting of your choice.
Update on Office Hours, Programs and Services
While we get through the crisis that has been created by the COVID-19 pandemic, be assured that we are here for you. For the health and safety of all involved, our office is now closed to the public until it is safe to resume normal hours. For now we will be open by phone appointment only. You can call and leave messages to be forwarded to the appropriate staff and we will be responding to emails sent to email@example.com. Our staff will be working from home and we'll be contacting volunteers who work in the office individually. We will have one advocate on staff M-F, 9am-5pm by phone appointment only. Please call to leave a message and we will respond as quickly as we are able.
All classes and support groups are cancelled until further notice. We will update you when we are able.
Need an advocate? Call 520-622-5582
Christina Bickelmann, Executive Director firstname.lastname@example.org
Communications & Events Asst: email@example.com
Social Media: firstname.lastname@example.org
Office Manager and Volunteer Coordinator: email@example.com
Help and Hope for Youth Initialtve, contact Arcy at firstname.lastname@example.org
Peer to Peer, contact Yazmin at email@example.com
Ending the Silence, contact Judi at firstname.lastname@example.org
Nami Basics, contact Ann at email@example.com
Family to Family, contact Judy at
Our Own Voice/En Nuestro Propria Voz, contact Maria at firstname.lastname@example.org
For questions about Heart to Heart, contact Lollie at email@example.com
OTHER LOCAL RESOURCES AND SERVICES
NAMI Issues Priorities Response to the HEROES ACT
You can help
fund our mission
and gain Arizona
NAMI Southern Arizona is a 501(c)3 non-profit
and a qualified charitable organization for
Federal Taxes. You can help those in need
and receive a dollar-for-dollar tax credit
when you make a donation to NAMISA .
These credits are available for a maximum
contribution of $400 for single taxpayers
and $800 for married, filing jointly.
And, these credits apply to contributions
you make from 1/1/2019 to 4/15/2020.
Please consider NAMI Southern Arizona
QCO Code 21027 as you make your
year end donations!
Due to the recent passage of the CARES Act, whether you itemize or not, you can benefit from the new $300 above-the-line federal tax deduction for cash contributions to qualifying charities -
like NAMI Southern Arizona!
For more information, consult your tax preparer or visit www.irs.gov.
We wish to thank the Stonewall Community Foundation for it's recent Covid-19 grant to NAMI Southern Arizona in support of our service to those in our community affected by mental illness. Stonewall grants strengthen the community by investing in dynamic organizations, projects, and leaders that elevate LGBTQ people their cultural contributions, advance their rights, and promote their wellness, safety, and liberation.
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