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The Basics Journey for Wendy Mahoney

Who is Mrs. Wendy Mahoney?

Wendy has a lifetime commitment to meeting the needs of at-risk populations and their families. She has worked successfully with many populations using her dynamic leadership skills, ability to communicate with and motivate people in challenging life situations and circumstances.  Wendy has spoken extensively on mental health, depression, suicide prevention, family supports, HIV/AIDS and mental health, building self-esteem in African-American children, learning styles, stages of childhood development, domestic violence, and trainings for teachers and mental health professionals. Community involvement is an important aspect of Wendy’s life. This is expressed through her commitment to her church community, youth development activities, systems advocacy and community programming. She currently serves as a board member for Community Links, Inc. and mentor to a Tougaloo College student.

What NAMI courses are you trained to lead?

[I’m trained as a] NAMI Basics teacher, NAMI Basics state trainer and Family Support Group Facilitator.

How long have you been leading these courses?

I started leading in 2013, so about five years.

How did you start to lead NAMI courses?

I have been involved with NAMI for about 20 years, both in Minnesota and Mississippi. I was the Executive Director for NAMI Mississippi, and after leaving, [I] wanted to remain involved with the organization; therefore, [I] began leading the NAMI Basics and facilitating the support group. 

What is the best part of leading a class?

The best part of leading Basics is providing support and resources to parents. Many times they feel hopeless; therefore, the class empowers them with resources and support from others dealing with similar situations.

What do you like about the participants in the course?

I like the fact that they are coming to get help and relief from their situation. 

What would you like participants to know about you?

I would like them to know I am a parent and professional who has dealt with the situation from both sides of the table. I have over 25 years of professional experience working with children with mental health disorders as well as 25 years of parental experience. I’ve worked as a therapist, education advocate, trainer and administrator of agencies serving children with mental health needs. 

Wendy Mahoney and Felicia Bowens are co-facilitating the next NAMI Basics course on Saturday, March 3, 10 and 17 at New Dimensions Ministries in Jackson. For more information and to register, go to the event page or send an email to


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