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Our Front Door: NAMI Help Lines Kate Farinholt & Deneice Valentine : NAMI Greater Baltimore Sita Diehl & Gracie Allen: NAMI Tennessee.

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Presentation on theme: "Our Front Door: NAMI Help Lines Kate Farinholt & Deneice Valentine : NAMI Greater Baltimore Sita Diehl & Gracie Allen: NAMI Tennessee."— Presentation transcript:

1 Our Front Door: NAMI Help Lines Kate Farinholt & Deneice Valentine : NAMI Greater Baltimore Sita Diehl & Gracie Allen: NAMI Tennessee

2 Objectives To consider the value of NAMI Help Lines To learn techniques and procedures for Help Line operation To consider how to take Help Lines to the next level

3 Why Help Lines? Often the first contact with NAMI for consumers and families We are the voice of consumers and families We have gained expertise through personal experience Effective help line interaction will: Help the caller Bring new callers into NAMI, Grow the membership and program usage Establish links between NAMI and other community organizations Help establish your affiliate and state org as the local or state Voice on Mental Illness Help fund operations

4 Help Lines Assistance to individuals Telephone Face to face follow-up Many forms: Kitchen table Dedicated NAMI members answering from home Mobile Help Line Cell phone with consumer/family counselors Staffed Help Line Coordinator Family/consumer counselors Paid or volunteer or intern Crisis (24/7) or office hours Coordinated with other help lines, or not Helping in the name of NAMI

5 NAMI Help Line Services Peer counseling Issues related to mental illness and its effects Consumer/family perspective – not professionals Information Mental illness NAMI website information Local/state materials NAMI programs and services Mental health services – array, access, quality Community resources – health, housing, employment, legal Referral To NAMI programs and affiliates To community mental health services To other community organizations

6 NAMI Help Line Services (cont.) Advocacy Individual advocacy giving them the keywords and empowering them to go to the next step themselves Helpline following up to advocate with a system directly Systems Advocacy: Tracking types and frequency of calls and complaints (to follow up; to substantiate complaints) Helping caller to see where their complaint/issue fits within advocacy as well as getting them info and resources NOW

7 NAMI Help Lines National Overview Help Line Survey: April/May NAMI organizations responded 52% local affiliates 34% regional help line 66% local help line 48% state organizations 28% have toll free line

8 Coordination of State/Local NAMI Help Lines N=19

9 NAMI Help Line Types N=33

10 2006 Call Volume N = 29

11 Help Line Funding Annual Budgets Funding Sources N=33

12 Help Line Personnel N = 63

13 Top Call Topics

14 NAMI Metro Baltimore History: 25 yrs ago, home phone 15 yrs ago central office PT staff fielding and referring calls some mail (postcards & newsletter) 2-3 volunteer f/m, outreach with personal phone

15 Temporary Fix The Bottom Drops Out: Welcome to NAMI Metro Baltimore Snapshot: Membership list corrupted; no $; under attendance new programs (F2F and support model) Disconnected volunteers Little consistency mailing list?

16 Opportunity: Organizational Reassessment – Finding NAMI: Staying connected

17 Multiple Goals

18 Connecting People Connections to Community Resources Connections to NAMI not to individuals Ongoing Contacts Connections to programs

19 Grow the Affiliate Program participants Volunteers Members Visibility Funding

20 Uniformity and Quality Lets Not Do it Twice Answers: Resources Basic Packet Consumer Packet C&A Packet Provider Packet Topical Resources Helpline Consistency Training Quality Assurance

21 Call Specifics: ALL calls are possible helpline calls4-500 calls a month simple calls for info in-depth or crisis calls and in- between Call length: 1min to 45 mins

22 NAMI Metro Baltimore Staffing Tiers: Team; Keeping people in touch with what we do 4-5 Staff (25% of FT staff and varies with hourly staff) All FT staff must attend F2F and periodic Info Mtgs; Interns/Americorps Volunteers

23 Training Basics: Intake Info and Resource Packets Philosophy Empowerment, Peers, Pulling People In; Looking beyond the Callers Requests to What they Need and What we Can Give them

24 Tiered Training and Duties Level 1:Orientation Level 2: Communication Level 3: F2F Level 4; most difficult calls. Review at periodic mtgs.: is there a resource or can we write this up into a protocol?

25 Quality improvement? Random follow-up calls 6-12 mths later (with survey instrument) Training Tiers Oversight and listening in on calls

26 NAMI Metro Baltimore Typical calls – wide variety – (crisis calls to general support) most popular initial topics: immediate housing, imminent discharge, basic info re illnesses, support groups, specific outreach for specific program, referral to treatment Real topics: case management; array of services for which eligible; NAMI support and ed for that particular audience; upcoming Info Mtgs or other events; free or reduced Rx; what the system or the police etc can and cannot do;

27 Issues The more outreach we do, the more calls we get (IOOV, C&A, Ambassadors, Fairs; 911; BCARS referrals) The more program participants we have, the more calls we get (for more info, etc)

28 Follow up COLLECT THE CONTACT INFO!!!! and the background data Topical and customized resource packets all with NAMI program and time sensitive info Mailing list 6 mths Info re website and membership listserv Follow up at 6 mths explaining benefits of membership including web based resources. Follow up AGAIN and AGAIN

29 NAMI Metro Baltimore Record keeping Intake Sheet; keep 5 yrs Tracking: Contact info; referral to and/or interest in support and other NAMI programs; issues, demographics, Dx, relation, etc. etc etc... USE this info to follow up with them as well as the demonstrate needs


31 NAMI Metro Baltimore Budget/funding sources Unrestricted some program funding Reporting: Internal External

32 NAMI Tennessee Resource Line Statewide, toll free number 5% (growing) help line requests Peer counseling/active listening Information Referral: To NAMI TN regional staff (follow-up) To local affiliates (support groups and classes) To professional services During business hours 4 rings in resource line area, then rings throughout office All staff prepared to answer help line calls Call volume: 250/month average Call length minutes

33 NAMI Tennessee Resource Line: Personnel Part time coordinator 3 Paid peer counselors, part time 4 Paid regional staff Local affiliate volunteers (100+) Consumer/family volunteers in state office All other NAMI TN staff

34 NAMI Tennessee Resource Line: Training State office volunteers – Monthly or more often Orientation to phones Active listening Suicide/crisis counseling Mental health service system Frequently used resources (housing, legal assistance, etc.) Local affiliate volunteers Fall leadership training Winter consultation sessions State convention

35 NAMI Tennessee: Record Keeping Always available via the Internet No special software Prevents duplication of caller records Previous information easily retrieved during call Types of consumer interaction phone, face-to-face, Secure multi-tiered system User designated by Affiliate President User trained by Resource Line Coordinator Confidentiality agreement and password protection Keeps local affiliate data separated



38 NAMI Tennessee : On Demand Reports Race/Ethnicity Topics Call SummaryDiagnosis

39 Next Steps: Help Line Improvement Coordination between National, State, Local Volunteer/staff recruitment and training Supervision and quality assurance Record keeping/reporting

40 Help Line Limits: What is it that we cannot do? Give medical or legal advice Refer to particular providers Use the help line contact data in fundraising Other limitations

41 How Help Lines Help NAMI Bring in new members and program participants Make NAMI more visible in the human service system Source of revenue Grant funds Donations as callers get connected Ethical limits of fundraising from callers

42 Open the Door: Promoting NAMI Help Lines Promotional materials Print Web-based Through ALL your programs, services and outreach Networking with other NAMIs Networking with other help lines Networking with service providers

43 Thank You! Questions? Kate Farinholt & Deneice Valentine NAMI Metro Baltimore 5210 York Rd Rear Baltimore MD Sita Diehl & Gracie Allen NAMI Tennessee 1101 Kermit Drive, Suite 605 Nashville TN, (800)

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