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Families meeting the challenge of mental illness.

In Our Own Voice.

In Our Own Voice (IOOV) is a unique public education program, developed by NAMI, in which two trained consumer speakers share compelling personal stories about living with mental illness and achieving recovery.

Our own Galen Valley discusses his experience:

Each hour-long IOOV presentation follows the journey to recovery through its five major stages: Dark Days; Acceptance; Treatment; Coping Skills; and Successes, Hopes and Dreams. The presenter introduces each stage with a brief video and then relates his personal experience.

Throughout the IOOV presentation, audience members are encouraged to offer feedback and ask questions. Audience participation is an important aspect of IOOV because the more audience members become involved, the closer they come to understanding what it is like to live with a mental illness and stay in recovery. The more face-to-face contact they have with the consumer, the more likely they are to change their negative perceptions about mental illness.

NAMI Mercer offers IOOV presentations to consumer groups, students, law enforcement officials, educators, providers, faith community members, politicians, professionals, inmates, and interested civic groups. NAMI Mercer has 12 trained speakers for the program, and we have presented IOOV to more than 7,000 people in the county in the past several years.

Once you have experienced an IOOV presentation, you will not view mental illness in the same way. Your new perspective will include images of recovery, hope, and promising futures.

Presentations are offered free of charge by NAMI Mercer, or see our Events page for special times.

To request a presentation for your group, call NAMI Mercer at 609 799-8994 or send an email to here.

See details about the national IOOV  program.

Information on other national NAMI Education and Training programs may be found here.

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Families Meeting the Challenge of Mental Illness