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Family Support Groups



We offer support groups for family members of adults and children with mental health problems. 

NAMI Family Support Groups are 90-minute weekly support groups run by the family members of persons who live with mental illness for other friends and family members of persons living with a mental illness. These groups provide a place that offers respect, understanding, encouragement, and hope.

NAMI Family Support Groups offer a casual and relaxed approach to sharing the challenges and successes of coping with mental illness. Each group:

All groups are confidential – participants can share as much or as little personal information as they wish.

FSG Fact Sheet

Where in Virginia can I find a Family Support Group that is geared towards families/friends who have an adult family member with mental illness?

Currently in Virginia there are Family Support Groups forming or running in the following localities.  To find a NAMI Family Support Group near you click  here.

Support groups are open to all adult friends and family members of individuals living with a mental illness. Participants should feel welcome to drop by and share feelings, difficulties, or successes. Everyone is a valued participant. There is no program registration fee, and each meeting is free of charge.  

Where in Virginia can I find a group that is geared towards families who have an child or youth family member with a mental health problem?


Thank you to everyone who attended the Regional Family Support Group Trainings this Spring!

  FSG 2011 Graduates     

Interested in Becoming a Family Support Group Facilitator?

 Regional Trainings held so far in 2014

NAMI Northern Shenandoah Valley (March 2014)

NAMI Northern Virginia (March 2014)

NAMI Central Virginia (April 2014)

If you are interested in becoming a Family Support Group Faciliator, please complete an application and contact your local affiliate connect with the local Family Support Group Coordinator. 

Out of town participants will be considered, however travel and lodging will not be covered.

Trainings are schedule upon the request of the affiliate or once sufficient interest warrants.  Those wishing to be considered as a candidate should complete an application and connect with their local affiliate.  If you are unable to reach someone with your local affiliate or have general questions regarding NAMI program trainings please contact Sarah Steadman, Director of Programs at 804-285-8264 x203 or ssteadman@namivirginia.org

NAMI Family Support Group facilitators are certified by attending and graduating from a 2 -day training event. The training event is designed for facilitators to learn and practice specific skills that will guarantee a meaningful support group experience for all participants. After the training event, certified facilitators know how to encourage the group to make room for all of its voices; short-circuit personal sagas; engage the group in subjects of collective interest; encourage collective thought; and circumvent negative interactions by identifying common ground for real discussion among group participants. NAMI Family Support Group facilitators make use of the strategies, structures, and processes they have learned from the training events to ensure the group provides a place that is safe and maintains group guidelines.

For more assistance, please contact Director of Programs Sarah Steadman at ssteadman@namivirginia.org or (804) 285-8264 x203.

Thanks to a grant from the Department of Behavioral Health and Development Services, the training is provided free of charge to participants.

What is a NAMI Family Support Group "Champion?"

In every community, NAMI will be looking for "Champions" to help ensure that NAMI Family Support Groups take root, grow, and flourish. Some of the tasks a champion might perform are as follows:

Dedicated champions will help NAMI make history – by greatly increasing the number of people with mental illnesses whom we help and the number of people who learn about NAMI.

How can I become a NAMI Family Support Group "Champion" or learn more about these support groups in my community?

You can contact your local affiliate directly to let them know that you are interested in becoming a NAMI Family Support Group Champion.

Affiliate and Family Support Group Program Leaders' Resources

Please make sure to check out resources on the Family Support Group Program found under 'Resources for Strengthening your NAMI Program to help your program succeed!
Call us:(804) 285-8264
Fax us:(804) 285-8464
HelpLine:1 (888) 486-8264
General administrative questions:namiva@verizon.net
HelpLine information & resources:info@namivirginia.org

PO Box 8260, Richmond, VA 23226-0260