Tuesday, January 31, 2017

New Year, NAMI

My return to New Orleans January was temporarily delayed as I woke up at 5AM on January 3rd to find my flight on an economy airline had been cancelled and not rescheduled. I in turn had to find the next available flight out of North Carolina in order to return to my studies on time, which was not cheap. I guess that is the risk you take with traveling on an economy airline around the holidays. It has been great to get back in the swing of things. Within the classroom, the neurology and psychiatry blocks have been my favorite two blocks we have covered since July, certainly significantly due to my interest in mental health care. On that note, I have continued working with NAMI New Orleans and assisting with the NAMI Helpline. My experiences with callers continues to lead me to identify aspects of life that I take for granted such as guaranteed housing and access to healthcare. It is a bit frustrating to hear the struggles of community members who are doing all they can to improve their situations, but it is also very rewarding to be on the other end of the phone line and to provide callers with assistance and resources in all the ways NAMI has identified to be beneficial to this subgroup of the community living with mental illness. In addition to answering calls, I also had the opportunity to take part in thanking community members who had donated to NAMI the previous year by handwriting individual letters to all donors. Their donations continue to allow the organization to provide many of the wonderful services, which are significantly impactful and beneficial in the day-to-day lives of New Orleans community members living with mental illness.

January Community Service Hours - 6 hours