NAMI PA, Main Line offers the following free services and shares resources for families with children and teens living with mental health needs:
• NAMI PA, Main Line offers small grants (application available at http://tinyurl.com/NAMIpaMainLineGrant) to offset the costs of attending social skills programs or physician-recommended programs that facilitate social skills opportunities for children and teens with mental health needs, including those with autism spectrum disorder. For more information, contact us at 267-251-6240 or coordinator@NAMIpaMainLine.org
Resources for Helping Your Child or Teen
• A wealth of information, advice and resources are available from the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (https://www.aacap.org/AACAP/Families_and_Youth/Facts_for_Families/FFF-Guide/FFF-Guide-Home.aspx ). For example, if you’re concerned about your child’s mental health, reviewing this checklist from the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry can help you assess and document your child’s feelings and behavior: http://bit.ly/1VRGq
· Screening for youth ages 11-17 or for parents who are concerned that their children may have a problem is available at http://www.mentalhealthamerica.net/mental-health-screening-tools .
• Find resources to start a conversation with your child about their mental health via Mental Health America (http://bit.ly/learnmh) and find Mental Health America’s online screening tool your child can complete at http://bit.ly/1GcYXVx.
Online Resources to Help Siblings of Children/Teens with Mental Illness
Resources for Helping Teens with Mental Health Problems
• Crisis Text Line: Free, confidential 24-hour service accessible via text message to number 741-741. Statistics show that only 5% of teens are willing to call phone crisis lines, but they’re more willing to text. People can text anonymously with a crisis counselor on the Crisis Text Line. Visit The New York Times website at http://nyti.ms/1MK416g for more information.
• OK2TALK: The goal of OK2TALK is to create an online community for teens and young adults struggling with mental health problems and encourage them to talk about what they’re experiencing by sharing their personal stories of recovery, tragedy, struggle or hope. Visit www.ok2talk.org
• NAMI Say It Out Loud program, which increases awareness and discussion of mental health conditions among 14-18 year olds:
o poster available at http://bit.ly/1GgZDGU
o video available at https://vimeo.com/121071189
o additional resources available at http://bit.ly/1C9d2xT
• Teen Health and Wellness website provides hotlines, help lines, and information lines, organized by subject: http://www.teenhealthandwellness.com/static/hotlines#Mentalhealth
o “What Families Need to Know about Adolescent Depression,” including symptoms of teen depression, suggestions about how parents can communicate effectively with their teen and record symptoms, history, etc., to help a teen get an accurate diagnosis: http://cpancf.com/pdf/namifamilyguidedepressionadolescentsandchildren.pdf
• Intro to Services: https://namipamainline.org/info-resources/intro-to-services/
• How to Access Valuable Behavioral Services in PA: Consider Medical Assistance for a Child/Teen with Serious Disability: http://wp.me/P3QT8t-Nc
For additional resources for teens, please see Resources for Transition Age Youth (16-24)
Education for Families and Caregivers
• NAMI Basics is a NAMI national signature education program for parents and other caregivers of children and adolescents living with mental illness. This free six-session course is facilitated by trained teachers who are also parents/caregivers of individuals who developed the symptoms of mental illness in childhood. The course provides the fundamentals a caregiver needs for themselves, their family, and their child who is living with a mental illness. For more information or to register: 267-251-6240 or coordinator@NAMIpaMainLine.org