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Local NAMI affiliate expands service area


Mon, Jun 5th 2023 10:30 am

New name reflects change

Press Release

The region’s affiliate of the National Alliance on Mental Illness, formerly known as NAMI Buffalo & Erie County, has been approved to expand its geographic service area to include the counties of Niagara, Orleans, Wyoming, Cattaraugus and Chautauqua. To better reflect this expansion, NAMI-NYS and the national organization granted approval for the name change to NAMI Buffalo & Western New York.

NAMI Buffalo & Western New York will immediately begin building its capacity and developing strategic partnerships with stakeholders, providers and residents of the five counties in the new service area.

“Mental health concerns are on the rise across our region. We are excited for this opportunity to provide support and education to residents in surrounding counties to meet this increase in demand,” Executive Director Jeffrey Pirrone said. “We look forward to collaborating within these communities to specify the areas of need and what supports will most benefit the residents there.”

A press release stated, “NAMI Buffalo & Western New York currently provides support, education and advocacy to individuals and families challenged by mental health distress. The education programs, like Family-to-Family and Sharing Hope, ensure families get the support and information they need. NAMI also hosts family support groups for loved ones of those with mental health needs so that no one feels alone in their mental health journey. Through its advocacy efforts, NAMI shapes public policy for people with mental illness and their families, and provides volunteer leaders with the tools, resources and skills necessary to ensure mental healthcare for all. NAMI’s local HelpLine allows trained volunteers with lived experience to respond personally to hundreds of requests each year, providing free information and support – a much-needed lifeline for many.

“NAMI Buffalo & Western New York is an affiliate of the National Alliance on Mental Illness, the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization dedicated to building better lives for millions of Americans affected by mental illness. Begun from a small group of families gathered around a kitchen table in 1979, NAMI has blossomed into the nation’s leading voice on mental illness. Today, it is an association of hundreds of local affiliates, state organizations, and volunteers who work in communities to raise awareness, and provide support and education.

“NAMI Buffalo & Western New York has served Erie County and beyond since 1984 and continues to support, educate and advocate for families and caregivers of individuals affected by mental illness. At its core, NAMI is families compassionately helping families of loved ones challenged by mental illness.”

For more information about NAMI Buffalo & Western New York, to speak to a HelpLine volunteer, or to register for a group or class, call 716-226-6264, visit www.namibuffalony.org, or find it on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn by using the handle @NAMIBuffalo.

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