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Child & Adolescent Action Center

Welcome to a place for parents and primary caregivers of children and adolescents with mental health diagnoses to find relevant articles, announcements, and links to local resources.

NAMI Greater Orlando Programs


Basics is a FREE 6-week education course offered for parents/caregivers of children and adolescents with mental health issues.  Topics include:

  • The biology of mental illness; getting an accurate diagnosis
  • Treatment works – an overview of treatment options
  • Tools for the toolbox – communication skills, handling challenging behavior, impact on family members, etc.
  • Recordkeeping and the systems your child is involved in (school, juvenile justice, mental health)

For more information or to register for Basics, please contact us at 407-253-1900 or


Approximately 20 percent of youth ages 13 to 18 experience severe mental disorders in a given year.  For ages 8 to 15, the estimate is 13 percent.  One-half of all chronic mental illness begins by the age of 14; three-quarters by age 24.  Despite effective treatment, there are long delays − sometimes decades − between the first appearance of symptoms and when people get help.  Almost one-half of youth ages 8 to 15 with a mental illness receive no mental health services in the year prior to diagnosis.  Suicide is the third leading cause of death for ages 15 to 24 years.

Started by NAMI DuPage County in Illinois, Ending the Silence is an interactive program provides key resource materials for high school students, informs them about the basic signs and symptoms of mental illnesses and reduces stigma through personal stories.  The informational and interactive PowerPoint is the first part of the presentation and the personal story is the second. The last few minutes of the class are for evaluation and Q & A.

Our Director of Education, Donna Helsel, states, “Ending the Silence surrounding mental illness begins with educating the youth.  This program helps students understand the signs and symptoms of mental illnesses and how to respond if they see these in themselves or others.  It helps normalize mental illness, encouraging openness and respect and reduces stigma which is the number one reason why people do not seek treatment.  Through education, we can work to correct inappropriate attitudes that lead to lack of empathy, exclusion and even bullying among teens.  We believe lives can be saved.”

If you would like an Ending the Silence presentation brought to your school, please contact us at 407-253-1900

Our National NAMI’s Child & Adolescent Action Center


Mental Health Resources for Children & Families

American Academy of Children & Adolescent Psychiatry

Central Florida Parent Center for Disabilities

Child & Adolescent Bipolar Foundation

Children & Adults with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (CHADD)

National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities


Advocating For Your Child: 25 Tips for Parents

Improving the Mental Health & Well-Being of America’s Children

Mental Health and Learning Disabilities: Why a Higher Risk? 


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