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NAMI Support Groups

How To Attend

NAMI Kern County will use Zoom to host Online Support Groups. Zoom is a web-based video conferencing tool with a local, desktop client and a mobile app that allows users to meet online, with or without video. You can contact 661-247-5426 with any questions.

Please note: 
Anyone is welcome to register for and join a group. Please note: our NAMI Support Groups are CLOSED MEETINGS. In order to keep our group settings safe and confidential, we do not allow anyone to observe our support groups. If you are not in need of the support each group provides and are only joining a group to observe the process, you will be removed.

NAMI Online Support Groups and Forums are not intended to replace or be used as a substitute for clinical or medical services, and facilitators are NAMI-trained peers, not mental health professionals. By attending and participating in NAMI Kern County’s Online Support Groups and Forums, you agree to abide by Group Guidelines and Principles of Support outlined at the start of each meeting, and can be removed and/or banned from any meeting at the staff and/or facilitators’ discretion.

Peer Mentoring Program

Vision for the program
Our vision for this program is to increase mental wellness and encourage independence for persons with a diagnosed mental health condition through the support of their peers. The Peer Mentoring Program was created for those with a mental illness (Participants) who are motivated to establish stability, the capacity to maintain wellness, and the practice of self-care through mentorship from someone who has lived experience (Peer)

What Mentors Are Saying...
When I first meet someone, I only have a first name and phone number. I like that. I don’t want to know any more about them until I meet them. This way there are no preconceived notions. No bias. We all start from the same place. I want to get to know the person, and I am sure they feel the same. I wanted to advocate for others with mental illness. This helped me to stay well and I enjoyed the work. I want them to know they are not alone. That you are not a misfit. What motivates me so much is knowing I didn’t have this program. The work pays me back in infinite ways.

What People Are Saying...

I wish I had had someone who understood and could help me learn how to cope and manage my illness. You can overcome your illness and be aware of what’s going on within you

Peer Mentor and NAMI-SCC Assistant Program Coordinator


The direct integration of a peer (NAMI Mentor) during a person’s recovery has been instrumental in providing hope to individuals we provide with treatment in our Continuing Care Program.

– El Camino Hospital Mental Health & Addiction Services

Peers have been on the journey that patients are now struggling with. They can form rare bonds and break down barriers and help our patients open up. They usually get information we can’t from the patient, information that can provide valuable insight and can help the medical team assess the patient’s needs.

– Participant, NAMI-SCC Community Peer Program

The peer mentor experience was a ‘gift,’ and I would tell others, ‘It’s a free program. You have nothing to lose, give it a try.’

– Participant, NAMI-SCC Community Peer Program

Family Support Groups

Care & Share family support groups provide support, education, advocacy and information to family members and friends of those suffering with severe mental illness. Each person has an opportunity, if they wish, to share their current situation with the group. Since everyone attending has or is going through similar issues, everyone can offer understanding and comfort. Often group members are able to offer helpful ideas, suggestions and resources.

"Connection" Peer Support

NAMI "Connection" Support Group is available at different times and locations throughout the month. It is mentored by trained peers with lived experience. Allows the consumer/peer a safe non-threatening environment to meet with others for support within their peer group.
• They find they are not along in dealing with their illness
• Helps them associate with friends who may have similar interests and goals
• Helps them in their recover process
Peers generally stay in recovery when they are actively involved in programs like these that encourage recovery. Call: 661-247-5426 or click the button for more information.

What Can I Expect For The Peer Mentoring Program?

The peers in this program are NOT counselors or therapists. They are mentors who will provide support and understanding. They will also help set goals, recommend resources that may assist the participant, suggest opportu-

nities for social engagement, encourage self- advocacy and outline potential areas for lifestyle adjustments. They will share their journey of living with a mental health condition and work with the participant in taking steps towards their wellness and independence.

For up to three (3) months a Peer will provide support and encouragement to the Participant in the following ways:

  • Two (2) calls per week from a Peer, lasting 15 – 30 minutes
  • One (1) visit per week, lasting 1-2 hours within the local community (Kern County).

The Participant will set goals, practice self-care techniques, and become more independent. The Peer will share resources, promote self-advocacy, and present options for growth.

After receiving treatment and following their doctor’s directions, the Participant will    remain open to:

  • Attendance at support and/or recovery groups suggested by the
  • Identify and practice coping skills with the Peer that work best for the
  • Practice social engagement by meeting outside the home for coffee/snack.
  • Adopt self-care routines that promote wellness and instill confidence.

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