September 2011 Newsletter

Welcome to NAMI Four Seasons September News.  REMINDER:  The NAMI Family-to-Family course begins September 12th – a few more places have opened up – call today to register!

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(select links to go directly to info)
Monthly Education Program
SAVE THE DATE – Upcoming Events
CIT Training
New Brochure!
Cooper Riis Tour

Volunteer Profile
Board Report
Recap – August Meeting

Election Nominees Sought

Church Worship Service for
Families with Mental Illness


[column width=”55%” padding=”0″] Pete Earley: America’s Mental Health Madness
Preparations for our Mental Illness Awareness Week commemoration featuring guest speaker Pete Earley, author and advocate for those suffering from brain disorders, is in full swing. We have a team of NAMI members working to raise sponsorship funds and spread word of the event.

Reaction has been very positive and we have also received continuing education accreditation from MAHEC ( Mountain Area Health Education Center ) for healthcare professionals wishing to attend.

This is an open invitation to all our NAMI Four Seasons’ members to participate in this very special event, by purchasing a ticket ($10.00), donating or volunteering your time on October 8th. We will need help setting up, taking down, reception desk, raffle sales, ushers and someone to oversee refreshments.

Join us on Saturday September 17th, to find out more, purchase tickets, volunteer.  Those unable to attend can call 888-955-NAMI (6264) or e-mail


September  Educational Program

Saturday, September 17th- 10:00 – 12:00 – Pardee Education Center – Blue Ridge Mall

This month we are especially pleased to welcome four police officers who have taken a course in Crisis Intervention. This course taught them how to defuse incidents when encountering a person who is clearly mentally ill.

is a great opportunity to meet and talk with these specially trained officers who are the first step towards the creation of an effective jail diversion program and a prequel to our special October presentation at BRCC with Pete Earley as our guest speaker, author and advocate for the mentally ill. Mr. Earley’s presentation will include the effectiveness of CIT training, crisis “drop off” centers, mental health courts and effective supportive services and housing.

Barbara Smith, Vice President of NAMI Four Seasons and coordinator for CIT training, will present a short history of CIT training in our area and introduce our guests.


SAVE THE DATE – Important Upcoming Events

September 12 – Family-to-Family 12 week course begins. A FEW PLACES HAVE OPENED UP – CALL TODAY TO REGISTER. Read about the class here.
September 30 – October 2 – Connections Facilitator Training (Consumers Only) – Asheville Area – contact Leslie for more information @ 828-984-0387
October 8 – Saturday – 10:00 a.m. – Please join us in celebrating Mental Illness Awareness Week, the first week in October.  We are honored to have Pete Earley, author of Crazy: A Fathers Search Through America’s Mental Health Madness, as our keynote speaker. Beginning at 10am, at Blue Ridge Community College. Tickets are $10.00 and can be purchased online
October 16 – Sunday, 4 p.m. – Worship service for NAMI families and friends at Trinity Presbyterian Church – OPEN TO ALL FAITHS – Will focus on the families of those afflicted with mental illness. Families tend to grieve for might have been and find it difficult to focus on the possibilities that remain for their loved one. Title of Sermon….Faith and Hope..You can not have one without the other. Call Joe Gernoske for more info. 828-697-5308. Call Joe Gernoske for more info. 828-697-5308.
October 19 – Cooper Riis Visit – For all members who were unable to attend our May 21st General Education Meeting and missed the presentation from Cooper Riis we would like to offer a chance to visit their rural campus, take a tour of the facility and enjoy lunch. More information in the September newsletter.


CIT – Crisis Intervention Team

On August 6, 2011 the Times News carried an Associated Press article about a mentally ill homeless man who died from head and neck injuries after a violent confrontation with police officers. There was also mention of a special training program offered by law enforcement across the country to diffuse such incidents and reduce harm to those involved. It is this training program that is of great importance to all who deal with mentally ill persons who are in crisis and to the NAMI Four Seasons affiliate.

Major Sam Cochran, Memphis, Tennessee developed the CIT model. He was the initial coordinator of the Memphis Police Services Crisis Intervention Team (CIT). He retired from the Memphis Police Department after 33 years of service. Major Cochran currently instructs at The University of Memphis, Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice with services to the university CIT Center and continues in local and national NAMI services assisting CIT efforts.

NAMI Four Seasons has been working for three years with Western Highlands LME, other NC affiliates, local providers and community agencies, and especially law enforcement, to develop and advocate for a CIT Training Class. In November 2010 NAMI TransylvaniaTA and NAMI Four Seasons partnered in hosting their first CIT Class. These classes are taught by trained instructors as well as incorporating providers, people with mental disabilities and family members. There were 14 officers who were CIT certified from this class. NAMI Four Seasons will now host the second CIT training class which will be held at Blue Ridge Community College from October 31, 2011 through November 4, 2011. We are proud to announce that two of our trained CIT officers from the Hendersonville Police Department will be assisting in the teaching of this class. Also, four CIT officers will be speaking at NAMI Four Seasons General Meeting about their experiences in using their CIT training on the job. The date of the General Meeting is Saturday, September 17, 2011, and is open to the public. Don’t miss this opportunity to meet them and learn all about how important it has been for them to be CIT certified. If you have any particular area you would like to hear about or specific questions, please call Barbara Smith (828) 272 -5080 so that your interests can be made known ahead of time.


New Brochure!

Just in, new informational brochures.  Thanks to Adrienne Brady for spearheading the new design.  The 2011 brochure is in full-color and very attractive and informative.  Select this link to view the brochure online.  The brochures will be distributed throughout Henderson and Polk Counties.


Cooper Riis Tour

For all members who are interested in visiting Cooper Riis and would like to take a tour of the rural campus at Mill Spring.  The date is Wednesday October 19th at 10.00am and will take approximately one hour. Please call 888-955-6264 or e-mail info@namifourseasons.orgto sign up and to learn of carpooling information.


Volunteer Profile – Lisa Wilt, Consumer Representative on Four Seasons Board

I strongly felt there needed to be a consumer on our board. I’ve served two terms, I believe.
I am in both individual and group therapy. I believe that taking the prescribed meds with regularity is really important. I will take them probably all my life. And staying in contact with family and friends over the phone and face to face is also important.
More consumer outreach through more education programs that pertain to coping strategies with mental illnesses.F2F can have good consequences for all the family members. My family did a 180 degree turn-about in dealing with my illness. There is now more acceptance and patience about my illness and the ability to understand more about the healing process.

Thank you Lisa for your ongoing contribution and I wish you the best in coping with your new health challenge – Parkinson’s Disease.  ~ The Editor

Board Report – August 9th Board Meeting
  • The Board met at the 6th avenue Clubhouse at 4:30p.m.
  • The mockup/quote for the new brochures was presented and approved. The Brochures were printed immediately.
  • Affiliate Leadership Training will be held in Raleigh on September 8th. The Hotel bill will be paid by NAMI. Free lunch will be provided. Any Committee or Board members are urged to attend. Interested? Call Leslie at 828-894-3507.
  • Four Seasons will participate in the Arts Council Fair on October 1 & 2 and publicize our Fall Fundraiser – VOLUNTEERS ARE NEEDED!
  • A re-arrangement of the monthly Education meeting schedule was approved and go into effect January 2012 – the schedule will be as follows:
    • 10:15-10:30 –Sign-in and socialize w/ refreshments
    • 10:30 – 11:00 – Business
    • 11:00 – 12:00 – education program
  • Barbara Smith reported that the Fall CIT class will be held October 31 – November 4 at Blue Ridge Community College.

Recap of August educational film program – “A Brilliant Madness”

This documentary film was about John Nash, the brilliant mathematician and Nobel Prize winning scientist, who suffered an onset of Schizophrenia at age 30. Descending deeper and deeper into his illness, he lost his job, his family and a home. Treatment failed in the beginning, largely due to antiquated and bizarre methods.

After some years of aimlessness, his symptoms declined, miraculously and eventually he became whole again. He was able to resume teaching again and to regain the respect for his “brilliant mind”, that eventually earned him world recognition as a Nobel Scholar.

Attendees expressed the desire for more uplifting films like today’s selection.


If you have any questions or suggestions for the newsletter email us at or use the contact form.

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