Showing gratitude with notebook gifts
Volunteers are the foundation of NAMI Wake County. The organization has been providing mental health education and training for more than 30 years in Raleigh, N.C. and other locations throughout Wake County. NAMI Wake County relies on volunteers to carry out most of its work. That’s why part of a recent grant was used to give notebook gifts to the dedicated people who make their programs and services possible.
Learning and lived experience
NAMI has been almost entirely run by volunteers since its founding in 1987. Executive Director Annie Schmidt is the only employee. “We have anywhere from 80 to100 people on our active volunteer lists,” she said.
NAMI Wake County, an affiliate of the National Alliance of Mental Illness, provides a wide variety of programming to people with mental illness, their family members and the community at large. “We have support groups that meet 20 times per month, and we offered 11 courses last year,” Schmidt said. “What makes NAMI different with that is that it’s all based on lived experience. We have these communities that are created through our classes and support groups that show people they are not alone, and they can be accepted and find resources to assist with their recovery.”
The group hopes to offer even more classes this year, along with 75 NAMI In Our Own Voice presentations in which participants tell their personal mental illness stories.
“Sixty percent of people receiving treatment for mental health did not receive treatment last year,” Schmidt said. “A lot of times family members aren’t equipped to help those family members who aren’t receiving treatment. One of the important things with NAMI is that we’re looking to support family members so they can support their family members with mental illness.”
Thanking volunteers with notebook gifts
“We wanted to give them the notebooks both as a thank-you and a way to take notes during training and support,” said Schmidt.
In addition to the notebook gifts, the organization also received a Closed-Back Table Throw, which Schmidt was excited to put into action.
“We always hear NAMI is the best-kept secret and we don’t want to be a secret,” Schmidt said. “We got the table throw so that people can see us and understand that we’re part of a national organization. Helping to make that connection and helping us with branding allows us to look more legitimate as an organization.”
A note from Cheryl:
So many nonprofit organizations like NAMI Wake County rely on volunteers to succeed. We’re happy to have a small part in recognizing volunteers through assistance from our one by one grant program. For more information, visit onebyone.4imprint.com.