The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) provides a free, hands-on Advocacy training program called “NAMI Smarts for Advocacy.”  The training helps individuals living with mental illness, as well as their friends and family, transform their lived experience and their passion into skillful grassroots advocacy to increase government support and funding for mental health recovery services and to reduce the stigma and discrimination which too often hinders people’s chances of recovery.

NAMI New Jersey will be hosting a free, full-day NAMI Smarts for Advocacy training titled “Powerful Voices Make a Difference” on Saturday, July 20, 2019, 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., at Chilton Medical Center’s Board Meeting Room, 97 West Parkway, Pompton Plains, NJ. Anyone interested is welcome to register. 


The unique step-by-step, skill-building design of NAMI Smarts is effective with a wide range of participants, including those who are new to advocacy as well as individuals with years of experience.

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“Grassroots advocacy is simple; you don’t have to know about policies or politics,” say the organizers.

Participants can expect to develop the following skills which can be used when contacting their elected representatives:

- Telling a compelling personal story that is inspiring and makes an “ask” in 90 seconds
- Writing an effective email, making an “elevator speech,” and making an impactful phone call
- Orchestrating a successful meeting with an elected official


Those who complete the training will come out confident and able to share their story in a way that moves policymakers.

Seating is limited, and advance registration is requested by Saturday, July 13.  To register, call Dominga Gornell or Arnold Hyndman at 908-319-1361.