ADVOCATING MENTAL HEALTH (NAMI DE)

Today’s special guest is involved with an organization that I’ve been spending time getting to know on a personal level. Annie Slease is the Director of Advocacy & Education at NAMI Delaware. I wanted to bring Annie on to the podcast to introduce herself and share more about NAMI. 

In today’s episode, Annie explains what NAMI is along with the services it provides. She also shares her personal journey that led her to NAMI and ultimately becoming a staff member. 

What’s in this episode:

  • What Is NAMI DE?
  • Annie’s Personal Journey to NAMI.
  • Mental Health Statistics. 
  • Mental Health and the Younger Generation. 
  • The Importance of Validating and Processing Emotions. 
  • How the Pandemic Has Impacted Mental Health.

ABOUT ANNIE 

Annie Slease, M.Ed., is the Director of Advocacy & Education at NAMI Delaware. After a 25-year career as a classroom teacher, she joined the NAMI Delaware staff in 2017, inspired by her experience as a parent navigating mental health crises without adequate information or support and then finding herself navigating the criminal justice system, as well. 

At NAMI Delaware, Annie leads the Advocacy & Education Team, responsible for programs, outreach, and advocacy statewide. Annie is a certified trainer of several national, evidence-based mental health and suicide prevention programs, and she contributes to efforts statewide on mental-health focused topics including: school safety, suicide prevention, family education and support, youth and adult services, and Delaware crisis response. She consults with policy leaders and testifies for legislation that will improve the lives affected by mental illness in Delaware.

Last August she celebrated the Governor’s signing of HB 100 – a bill bringing elementary school mental health professionals up to nationally recommended ratios. Similarly, this year she is advocating for HB 300 which focuses on middle schools. Annie serves on several statewide committees, including her position as Mental Health Lead for the Delaware School-Based Health Alliance, and she is a member of the Delaware Behavioral Health Crisis Care Task Force and the Education Committee of the Lt. Governor’s Behavioral Health Consortium. 

She and her husband Tom are co-parents to 5 adult children ranging in age from 21-29 who live in Seattle, Charlotte, New York City, and Philadelphia. Annie and Tom share their empty nest in Newark with their cat Daisy and their pandemic puppy Penny Rose.

IG: @namidelaware

FB: https://www.facebook.com/namidelaware 

Twitter: @namidelaware 

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/nami-delaware-22445430/ 

Website: https://www.namidelaware.org 

Annie’s Blog: www.stillhopefulmom.com  

Annie’s IG: @stillhopefulmom

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