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NAMI Nassau Photos 2018

2018  NAMI Nassau Hosts NCSO Officer Appreciation Breakfast

Officer appreciation breakfast a success! NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) Nassau board members hosted a breakfast on June 4th to thank local officers for their service as they are often the first responders to individuals experiencing a mental  health crisis.  The breakfast was organized by NAMI board member and veteran officer Sergeant Charles Lucas. Lucas asserted, “The sheriff and I believe that mental  health is an important issue in our county.”  

NAMI board members provided a hot breakfast catered by Ms. Carolyn’s restaurant.  Though the business is normally closed on Mondays; Ms. Carolyn believed that the cause was important enough that she and her staff prepared and delivered the food on what would normally be their day off.

NAMI Nassau board members shared the mission of NAMI as well as information about programs and services offered in the county.  The breakfast proved to be effective, as eighteen officers joined as members. When addressing the topic of officers partnering with NAMI to reduce stigma toward individuals receiving mental health services; Detective David Douglas, volunteered, “I  look forward to helping in any manner that I can. When I was a patrol officer I would take the time to build a rapport with individuals receiving services so they did not feel as if they were being punished. This made it easier to get them the help that they needed.”  

Kerrie Albert, NAMI board member and Licensed Mental Health Counselor for Florida Psychological Associates, voiced, “I had a  wonderful time interacting with our law enforcement personnel and promoting mental health awareness in our community; I am so thankful for their support.”  Karrin Clark, Executive Director of NAADAC, added, “NAADAC is partnering with NAMI Nassau to better address the mental health needs of the underserved in our county.”  

NAMI Nassau is a not for profit  volunteer organization that provides free support groups for individuals with a mental illness and family members of a loved one with mental health needs,  education programs,  advocacy, outreach, scholarships programs for emergency psychiatric services, an annual shoe drive for adults with mental illness,  events to reduce stigma, and a 24 hour help line.  For more information about becoming a member of NAMI Nassau, volunteering, or making a donation please call (904) 277-1886 or email

2018 6th Annual Plant Clinic hosted by Yulee Home Depot

Yulee Home Depot employees: Jack Norris, Shirley Burke, & Carol Chauncey in collaboration with NAMI Nassau County board members hosted a plant clinic at an assisted living facility (ALF) for adults with a chronic mental illness on October 27th, 2018.  This was the 6th consecutive year that the employees volunteered to host the clinic.  Each of the employees has more than eleven years of experience with the garden department at Home Depot.  They traveled to the ALF with soil, flowers, and pottery in order to allow the residents the opportunity to make their own potted plant to place in their rooms.  Shirley Burke shared, “We enjoy seeing the same residents each year.” NAMI Nassau board member Susan Whitman contributed, “The plant clinic is special because it helps to bring nature indoors and provides individuals with a serious mental illness the chance to nurture and care for something other than themselves.”  The residents at the ALF voiced their appreciation that members of the Home Depot team would take the time out of their busy schedule to spend time with them.  One resident stated, “It makes us feel as if we are a part of the community; that we matter.”   NAMI Nassau County is a nonprofit, all volunteer agency that provides advocacy, support, and education for individuals with a mental health diagnosis.  For more information please contact (904) 277-1886, email or check out our website at

October 2018 Annual Dinner

Giving is the best therapy!  The NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) Nassau County, Fl Board of Directors,  the fundraiser dinner committee, volunteers, and the following sponsors:  FB Newsleader, First Federal Bank, NACDAC, Fernandina Beach Shrimp Festival Committee, Senator Aaron Bean, Commissioner Elect Aaron Bell, Starting Point Behavioral Health, Dayspring Village,  Callahan BBQ, and Florida Psychological Associates demonstrated this to be true by donating their time, talents, and money at the annual fundraiser dinner on October 1, 2018.  The funds raised at this event allow the NAMI Nassau affiliate to continue to provide support services, education programs, and scholarships for individuals with emergency psychiatric medical needs.    The evening began with the attendees feasting on the scrumptious food donated by Danny Murray, owner of Callahan BBQ, which is fondly referred to as the “Chicken House” by local residents.  Two individuals that live with a mental illness shared their testimony on how they were able to transition from an assisted living facility to their own apartment.  They attributed their long term stability to compliance with treatment and utilization of community mental health resources.  NAMI board member, Sergeant Charles Lucas, presented Sheriff Leeper and Senator Aaron Bean with plaques to show appreciation for their long term commitment and dedication to improving the quality and delivery of mental health services within the county.  Lucas lauded Senator Bean for his prior role in passing legislation for Self Directed Care.  SDC provides individuals that have a mental illness a person-centered planning process in order to allow them to have an active role in developing their own treatment plan.   

Senator Bean entertained the audience with his professional auctioneer talent and gift of congeniality for the 15th consecutive year during the live auction portion of the dinner. There was also a special appearance by Bradley Bean who utilized his skills to assist his father in procuring top dollar for the auction packages.  The jubilation ended with the knowledge that supporters were funding a worthy and much needed cause.  

The generosity of community supporters has afforded NAMI Nassau County to continue to provide much needed support groups, education groups, a help line, scholarship programs, and advocacy services within the county for residents with a mental illness and support for family members of a loved one  with a mental illness as well.  All of our services are free.  The NAMI Nassau County affiliate just completed a lengthy re-affiliation process with the National and State NAMI in order to continue our professional development and delivery of evidenced based NAMI signature programs.  These support services are vital to our community as 1 in 5 adults experience mental health conditions each year.  Our affiliate will continue its goal to decrease stigma surrounding the topic of mental illness and receiving services; as we know that mental health conditions are not caused by personal weakness, poor upbringing, or a lack of character.  A mental health diagnosis is a medical condition that has a detrimental impact on how an individual thinks, feels, and his or her ability to relate to others or function within his or her environment through no fault of their own.    

For information about our affiliate, attending one of our support groups or education classes, volunteering, or joining our affiliate please call (904) 277-1886 or email

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