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Local NAMI chapter becoming more visible

By By Steve Gillespie / staff writer
Aug. 28, 2002
The local chapter of the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill is seeking new members and reasserting itself as a patient advocacy group.
NAMI provides advocacy, education and support for people with mental illness, who they call "consumers," as well as their families, care givers and friends.
Pennington said NAMI has about 50 members on its mailing list, but few attend the monthly meetings held on the first Tuesday of each month.
NAMI members met with area mental health providers this week to establish closer ties so that the organization can better serve the community.
Dr. Ramiro Martinez, director of East Mississippi State Hospital, met with NAMI members on Monday. He said he and his staff are encouraged by NAMI's new efforts.
Pennington said expanding to serve surrounding counties is one of NAMI's goals. The organization also plans to start a pilot support group in October at Alliance Health Center for people with mental illness and their family members.