Vicksburg Spring 2018 Update
Hello, Everyone! NAMI Vicksburg is busily planning a very important event coming up in April. We will be hosting our very first Mental Health Town Hall Meeting along with NAMI Mississippi. Please mark your calendars and plan to be with us at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, April 24, in the Circuit Court Room of the Warren County Court House at 1009 Cherry Street here in Vicksburg! The panel of speakers will include Mr. Bobby Barton of Warren-Yazoo Behavioral Health, Ms. Stacey Waites of the Warren County Holding Facility, Sheriff Martin Pace, VPD Chief Milton Moore, Ms. Tameka Tobias of NAMI Mississippi, and Mr. Brent Hurley of the Mississippi Department of Mental Health. This panel will discuss community mental health challenges, services, facilities, crisis training, and the impact of current political and economic factors on community mental health. The primary intent is to share information about the current status of mental health care in our community and look at ways that crisis intervention training can assist law enforcement in their dealings with individuals with serious mental illness. The moderator for the evening will be Randall Williams, the NAMI Vicksburg affiliate representative to the NAMI Mississippi Board of Directors. Randall also has chaired the Planning Committee, which has been working diligently for months in preparation for this important community-wide event. For questions or more information, you can contact Randall directly at 601-630-7724, via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or through NAMI Vicksburg at email@example.com.
In looking back over the past several months, NAMI Vicksburg maintained outreach to the community through several events. October brought a quarterly Affiliate Meeting with guest speaker Ms. Anitra Nichols of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., who shared with the attendees about the history and service of AKA over the years and down to the present. NAMI Vicksburg hopes to partner with AKA on some projects in the future. The quarterly birthday parties for our friends at Wisconsin Cove and the Group Home have continued under the able leadership of Mary Pope and Sarah Johnson with the aid of volunteers Shirley Williams, Denise Mounger, Deloris McGee, and others. NAMI Vicksburg was also represented at the Alcorn Health and Wellness Fair on Nov. 8, 2017, by Thomas Carson, Thomas Spates, and Shirley Hedrick, who shared NAMI resources with visitors. The Affiliate’s usual visit to the local Vicksburg Veteran’s Day Luncheon was replaced by NAMIWalks on Nov. 11th, which honored veterans. Several affiliate members attended the walk and walked with the NAMI Vicksburg Volunteers Teams, captained by Deloris McGee. It was a great day!
Two of the highlights of 2017 for NAMI Vicksburg were walking in the Christmas Parade on Dec. 2nd (participants included affiliate members, families, friends, and fur babies), and hosting our much-anticipated Christmas Party for 50-plus guests complete with decorations, gifts, door prizes, games, Christmas carols, delicious food, great fellowship, and special guest Santa Claus, on Dec. 7th. The party as usual made Christmas extra special for all of us.
The new year brought another Affiliate Meeting on January 23, 2018. Guest speakers for the event were Mr. Michael Caputo, Executive Director of Merit Behavioral Health; Ms. Tammi Sims, Outreach Coordinator for Merit Adolescent Services; and Ms. Lindsay Lynn, Outreach Coordinator for Merit Geriatric Services. They presented on the services available through Merit Behavioral Health and expressed an interest in supporting NAMI Vicksburg in any way they could. One of their reps, who is on the planning committee for the upcoming Town Hall, is very interested in getting crisis intervention training locally.
In the midst of all the activities, the Affiliate made plans to offer a Family-to-Family class and a Peer-to-Peer class beginning in March. After publicizing the classes at length, the Family-to-Family class began March 5th with Mary Pope and Deloris McGee as teachers, and Jenny Drake as the resource person. The Peer-to-Peer teachers decided to wait until a later date to offer their class.
NAMI Vicksburg continues to offer the following opportunities to the community:
- Family Support Meeting – First Tuesday of each month, 6 p.m., Merit River Region West Conference Room, 1111 N. Frontage Road.
- Connection Recovery Support – First Wednesday of each month, 4:30 p.m., Merit River Region West Conference Room, 1111 N. Frontage Road.
- Dutch-treat Fellowship Breakfast at Shoney’s – 1st Friday of each month, 8:30 a.m. Drop in/come and go at Shoney’s on Pemberton.
- NAMI Vicksburg Affiliate Meeting – Fourth Tuesday of each quarter (Jan., April, July, Oct.), 6 p.m. Location TBA. Next meeting: April 24th, 6 p.m. Mental Health Town Hall Meeting. Court House (2nd floor, Circuit Court Room).
For info on NAMI Vicksburg activities, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
– Submitted by: Harriette Mastin