Childrens Mental Health | Voices Found in Discovery & Recovery
Childrens mental health has come to the forefront over the past 10 years with childhood suicide rates on the rise. There needs to be a stand against this epidemic! Now is the time for all of us to stand together and take action against this growing tragedy! Join us at our annual Gala as we come together to lock arms and meet this epidemic head on. There will be celebrity guest speakers, fundraising, food and entertainment. All funds go to fighting childhood suicide as we continue to grow our mental health support in the Chicagoland. Please join us in saving lives!
Celebrating its 12th year, the NAMI CCNS Gala is one of the most notable events in the Chicagoland. The NAMI Gala has raised more than $1.2 million to help fund NAMI CCNS’s core mental health programs, courses and support groups. The evening supports NAMI CCNS’s work in more than 5 counties in the North Suburban Chicago area.
Join us on Saturday, May 4, 2019 for a memorable evening to put childrens mental health first!
About AJ Mendez
April Jeanette Mendez was born on March 19, 1987, in Union City, New Jersey. She is the youngest of three children, and in describing her childhood, Mendez said her family struggled with poverty, mental illness, and drug addiction. They frequently moved between apartments, sometimes living in motels or their car when they could not afford rent
Her brother’s interest in World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) influenced her to become a professional wrestler. With inspiration from WWE’s female wrestlers, especially Lita, she cemented her ambition at twelve years old. After high school she attended college until family and financial issues led to her dropping out six months into her studies. Afterward, she started working full-time to afford wrestling training.
AJ Mendez was diagnosed with bipolar disorder around the age of twenty, a condition her mother suffered from. She had previously experienced adverse effects from a misdiagnosis of depression and overdosed on antidepressants and painkillers. This event, which she considers a suicide attempt, caused her to seek proper treatment and the right diagnosis.
AJ has served as a mental health ambassador for and the National Alliance on Mental Illness and is author of the book Crazy is My Superpower, a New York Times Best Seller. She is an inspiration to teen girls all over the world and is making a true difference in the lives of people living with a mental health diagnosis.
What NAMI CCNS does do to impact mental health:
NAMI CCNS is uniquely positioned and provides the following educational programs at no charge:
- Ending the Silence is an educational program for high school/Jr. high students about mental illnesses, how to identify signs and symptoms, possibilities for recovery, and how to help themselves and support one another.
- Dual Solutions is a peer-led support group for 16 – 32 year olds experiencing co-occurring mental health and addiction issues.
- Balance for Success is for young adults seeking to balance recovery with college or work and the pressures of daily life.
- Stable-ity is a non-mounted equine therapy group, which uses the power of the human-horse connection to help manage some of life’s emotional challenges.
- WRAP is a class for those with a mental illness looking for an empowering, effective evidence-based guide for daily living.
- NAMI on Campus is an exciting extension of NAMI’s mission into the campus community. NAMI on Campus clubs are student-led clubs that tackle mental health issues on campus by raising mental health awareness, educating the campus community, supporting students, promoting services and supports and advocating.
Impacting the mental health of our youth and children
- 17% of high school students seriously consider suicide.
- 13% of children 8-15 experience a mental health condition.
- 50% of children 8-15 experiencing a mental health condition do not receive treatment.
- ½ of all lifetime cases of mental illness begin by age 14.
How you can support the 2019 NAMI Gala:
You can help by attending, sponsoring and/or donating an auction item to our Gala, to be held on Saturday, May 4, 2019 at the Michigan Shores Club.
Every dollar raised at the 2019 NAMI Gala will be used to support our unique programming and will continue to make the difference for everyone who needs our services.
We are always in need of amazing auction items. If you would like to donate an item, please download our form, print it and fill it out. Then, simply give us a call! Thank you!