About NAMI Spokane
The National Alliance on Mental Illness is the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization dedicated to improving the lives of individuals and families affected by mental illness. Since its inception in 1979 NAMI has become “The Nation’s Voice on Mental Illness” with offices in every state and local affiliates in more than 1100 communities across the country.
Through the dedicated efforts of grassroots leaders, NAMI focuses on three cornerstones of activity that offer hope and health: Education, Support and Advocacy. NAMI Spokane, a non-profit 501(c)(3), all volunteer, self-help organization was incorporated in 1980, with an office in the Peyton Building, and has since provided help to thousands of individuals and hundreds of families through its education programs, support groups, advocacy network and information/referral desk. All of our education courses, support groups and advocacy forums are free to the public and draw participants from Spokane County, eastern Washington and western Idaho.
We are funded through membership dues, donations and small foundation grants. All our courses and support groups are Peer Supported locally: Teachers, Mentors and Facilitators are family members and individuals in recovery who have been trained in NAMI Program Policy and Procedure. Our Mental Health Advocacy endeavors are aided by NAMI Action Centers and the NAMI Washington Public Policy Committee. We are recognized as the voice of reason on mental illness, always promoting public policy changes that raise the bar on treatment delivery and research. We provide a voice for those affected by mental illness and strive to end discrimination, overcome stigma and achieve services that improve lives. Mission Statement NAMI Spokane is dedicated to the eradication of mental illnesses and to the improvement of quality of life for all of those who have been affected by mental illness.
Our Areas of Focus:
1) Public Education and Information Activities
2) Family and Peer Education and Support Activities
3) Advocacy on behalf of people living with mental illness and for the health of our
4) Visible community events that raise funds and awareness while engaging the public
NAMI Spokane Board Members
Teri has volunteered with NAMI Spokane for 3 years, starting as a volunteer and serving as a Board Director, Vice President, and now President. She is employed as a case manager working with the elderly and disabled. Teri has nearly 20 years experience in social services. She is currently in recovery with her mental illnesses, and is continually working on maintaining stability and self-care. She enjoys cycling, poetry, home improvement, and yellow curry. She probably enjoys the curry a little too much. She lives in Spokane with her partner, dog and cat.
I discovered NAMI when my husband and I took the Family-to-Family class in the Spring of 2011. My son started having trouble with anxiety and panic attacks at the end of his freshman year of college in 2007. We started seeing symptoms of psychosis during the last part of 2010. As he got more symptomatic I felt totally helpless. As an RN I knew about mental illness but had never had any direct experience. The Family-to-Family class was a lifesaver as well as a marriage saver. I decided to get trained to teach the class because I wanted to be able to help others the way I had been helped. I joined the NAMI board last fall because I wanted to go further in my supporting of the mission of NAMI. I am in my 21st year as a School Nurse for Central Valley School District. I have two sons, one in Spokane and one in Seattle. I am blessed to have my parents (90 and 83), who are very healthy and active, living here as well. I enjoy reading, knitting, needlework, hiking, and cross country skiing.
I have worked in the nonprofit sector since 2008, both behind the scenes and out engaging with the public. I have a background in communication studies, women’s studies, and queer theory, and am committed to working passionately to advocate for civil and human rights for all people. I have personally experienced discrimination and shame regarding my mental health and am honored to support an organization that works to end the stigma of mental illness, and provide those affected with much needed resources. I spend most of my time working as a volunteer manager for a nonprofit in downtown Spokane, but when I’m not working you will usually find me at home with my partner, knitting, and covered in fur from our two adorable dogs.
After moving to Spokane in 1971, Gretchen taught in Spokane School District for three years before returning to college at EWU and Gonzaga to earn her graduate degree in psychology. She worked as a school counselor until her retirement in 2005. She and her husband have two adult sons; the younger one was diagnosed with bi-polar, OCD, and anxiety disorders in his mid-twenties. Since then the family has been actively involved in learning about mental illness and the effectiveness of available treatments. Her first experience with NAMI Spokane occurred a couple of years ago when she enrolled in the Family to Family classes. She also participates in a monthly NAMI family support group. Gretchen joined the Board in 2017 and represents NAMI Spokane on the Spokane Police Mental Health Steering Committee. In addition to membership in the League of Women Voters and Spokane College Women, political activities, such as advocating for legislation and encouraging civil discourse as we hopefully work together for solutions to important issues facing our country, occupy much of her time. For relaxation she loves to get together for coffee or lunch with friends, read mysteries and work on genealogy.
Amy Burns, MD: A woman on a mission
I’m ecstatic to be part of NAMI!!! I’ve been a practicing board certified psychiatrist working in private practice and community psychiatry in Spokane since 2009. No matter how many long days, weekends I work, it has become obvious that our community needs more. This realization informed my decision to transition from practice to teaching. Now, every day, I work to train the best psychiatrists I possibly can. In this way, I find meaning knowing that our graduates will eventually help our community in a larger scale than I’m capable of doing alone. It’s no surprise I’m thrilled to be a part of NAMI: an organization on a mission to help not only patients, but their families. Together we can do amazing things. Spokane is worth it.
David is a board member and the webmaster for NAMI Spokane.
Volunteer Positions Needed
Outreach Committee Member for Events
Flexible position that involves helping NAMI Spokane in planning our annual May and October events. Responsibilities include assisting in finding locations, contacting potential speakers, communicating with the Board of Directors, and working with other committee members. Training provided. Perfect for people that enjoy working behind the scenes and creating the magic!
Outreach Events Volunteer
This is a position for someone that would love to volunteer but isn’t able to commit a large amount of time. We ask for event volunteers to
work in shifts for our outreach events, such as Unity in the Community, Pride Festival, Caregiver conference, and more! You are paired with someone else and usually work in 2-4 hour shifts at a resource table, handing out brochures and telling people about NAMI Spokane! Know of someone else that wants to volunteer? Maybe your friend, mom, or brother? Come do a shift together! Training is provided. Perfect for people that are busy yet still want to support NAMI Spokane!
You can apply to volunteer by downloading and filling out a Volunteer Application, or by completing the online form below.
Before filing your application, be sure to follow these steps:
- Fill out the application completely and accurately.
- Help us get to know you by giving us detailed answers in the written questions.
- If you are filling out the application digitally, enter the information into the form provided.
- If you are filling out the application manually, download this PDF file, and mail the filled out form to:
10 N Post, Suite 638
Spokane, WA 99201
We look forward to hearing from you and we appreciate you taking the time to volunteer with us! Please feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.