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What is Family-to-Family?

Family-to-Family is a free 12-week educational course designed specifically for parents, siblings, spouses, teen-age and adult children and significant others of persons dealing with mental illnesses . . . taught by trained family members with the lived experience. Over 300,000 family members have graduated from this national program.

The 2-1/2 hour class meets for 12 consecutive weeks, and each week’s topic builds on the previous topics covered. Therefore, it is important that participants try to attend each class.

(If family members are in crisis and feel the need for support, we would encourage them to attend one of our Family Support Groups before taking the Family-to-Family educational course.)


What does the Family-to-Family course include?


  1. Current information about schizophrenia, major depression, bipolar disorder (manic depression), panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, borderline personality disorder, PTSD, and co-occurring brain disorders and addictive disorders
  2. Up-to-date information about medications, side effects, and strategies for medication adherence
  3. Current research related to the biology of brain disorders and the evidence-based, most effective treatments to promote recovery
  4. Gaining empathy by understanding the subjective, lived experience of a person with mental illness
  5. Learning in special workshops for problem solving, listening, and communication techniques
  6. Acquiring strategies for handling crises and relapse
  7. Focusing on care for the caregiver: coping with worry, stress, and emotional overload
  8. Guidance on locating appropriate supports and services within the community
  9. Information on advocacy initiatives designed to improve and expand services


What people are saying about Family-to-Family!

Class Schedule (2014-2015) and locations:

 NOTE: "Participants must register before attending a Family to Family Class. Please call the office or register on line. You may be able to register for a class 3 weeks into the start date but MUST first register by calling the office if the class has started. Thank You"

Naperville/Lisle: Starting March 3rd, Tuesdays; 7:00-9:30 p.m. Faith based.

Location:    The Compass Church
1551 E. Hobson Rd.
Naperville, Illinois

Google Maps Location of Church

To Register for this class click on the link (Registration)


Wheaton: Wednesdays Starting February 11th; 7:00-9:30 P.M.

Location: NAMI Office
2100 Manchester Road 
Building B, Suite 925
Wheaton, IL  60187
Mapquest directions to NAMI DuPage

To Register for this class click on the link (Registration)  Registration is now closed.  There is a waiting list click on the link to register for the waiting list.   If the Naperville location is at all convienient you can still register for that class. 



Hinsdale: Thurdays Starting March 12th ; 7:00 - 9:30 pm

Location:Hinsdale Hospital -- Lincoln Room (Level B-1)
120 N. Oak St. 
HinsdaleIL 60521

Sponsored by Hinsdale Hospital

Mapquest Link to Hinsdale Hospital.
To Register for this class click on the link (Registration)

Naperville:  Thursdays Starting February 5th; 7:00-9:30 P.M.

Location: Knox Presbyterian Church

1105 Catalpa Lane
Naperville, IL 60540
MapQuest directions to Knox Presbyterian Church


To Register for this class click on the link (Registration

Class space is limited!  These classes fill quickly.  Call the NAMI DuPage office at (630) 752-0066, ext. 210 to register or you can register online-click on the link (Registration)

 NAMI DuPage Family to Family flyer

More information on the Family to Family Education Program




 What people are saying about the Family-to-Family course

“[The course] was a revelation. It was the most beneficial time I believe I have ever spent. . . . I began to understand what might be going on inside our son, not just what I was feeling. My anger finally gave way to compassion. I discovered ways to deal with stigma. . . . Take the Family-to-Family Course. It will change your lives.

- Frank Ryan

“The course was wonderful. As the daughter of a parent with mental illness, and as a psychiatrist, the Family-to-Family course is much more valuable than I could have ever imagined.”

- Margaret (Peg) Miller, M.D.

“Before Family-to-Family, we were afraid, overwhelmed, and ill-equipped to manage this crisis unfolding in our home, in spite of the fact that my husband is a physician and I am an RN.

[This course] has provided our family with information and strategies to cope with our son in our home and truly understand mental illness and all the facets encompassing living with, emotionally supporting, and advocating for our son.”

- DuPage County Mother and Father


NAMI Family-to-Family Education Added to National Registry of Evidence-Based Mental Health Programs  

ARLINGTON, Va., May 28, 2013--The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) is pleased to announce that the NAMI Family-to-Family Education Program has been added to the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) National Registry of Evidence-based Programs and Practices (NREPP).


In the review, the program was independently assessed and rated for quality of research and readiness for dissemination.


"NAMI is proud to be included in the registry," said NAMIExecutive Director Michael J. Fitzpatrick .


"It is an affirmation of one of NAMI's signature education programs, established over 20 years ago, which to date has already helped more than 300,000 family members of people living with mental illness.


The NAMI Family-to-Family Education Program is a free 12-session course taught by other family members who have received intensive training for its presentation. Instruction and course materials are provided free to class participants.


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