basicslogobasicsphotoNAMI Basics is a free, 6-week education program for parents and family caregivers of children and teens who are experiencing signs of behavioral or mental health concerns or who have a diagnosis. NAMI Basics is offered in a group setting so you can connect with other people face-to-face.

You’ll learn the facts about mental health conditions and how best to support your child at home, at school and when they’re getting medical care. Last year, 99% of participants told us they would recommend the program to other parents.

The course is taught by a trained team  of parents with lived experience—they know what you’re going through because they’ve been there. The 6-session program provides critical strategies for taking care of your child and learning the ropes of recovery.

2017 Spring Class Schedule

If you are interested in a class, we encourage you to submit a completed registration form.  If you are in crisis and feel the need for support, we would encourage you to attend one of our Family Support Groups until you can get into a class.

  • Saturdays, April 1 – May 13 (no class April 15) from 10:00 a.m.-12:30 p.m., at Southeast Wellness Center, 2901 Montopolis Dr., Austin, TX 78741. Click here to register.

Classes meet for 2.5 hours for 6 weeks. Registration is required. To register for a NAMI Basics class, please click on the link above to fill out an online registration form. If you have questions about the class, call the office at 512-420-9810 ext 1001. Click on hyperlink of facility name to open flyer with more details.


What You Gain

NAMI Basics covers:

  • Managing crises, solving problems and communicating effectively
  • How to take care of yourself and handle stress
  • Developing the confidence and stamina to support your child with compassion
  • Advocating for your child’s rights at school and in health care settings
  • Learning about current treatments, including evidence-based therapies, medications and side effects
  • Gaining an overview of the public mental health care, school and juvenile justice systems
  • Understanding the challenges and impact of mental health conditions on your entire family

Why You Should Attend

A toolkit of information

  • Up-to-date information on a range of mental illnesses and their impact on the brain.
  • Current research on treatments including evidence-based therapies, medications and side effects.
  • Preparation for interactions with the mental health care system, school system and juvenile justice system.

Training in preparedness and emotional resiliency

  • Skills related to managing crises, solving problems and communicating effectively.
  • Strategies for self-care and for navigating the challenges presented by mental illness for each family member.
  • Empowerment as an effective advocate for your child.
  • Confidence and stamina for life-long understanding and support.

A community

Perhaps most importantly, as a participant you can gain comfort in knowing you are not alone. Recovery is a journey and there is hope for all families and individuals dealing with a brain disorder. The in-person group experience of NAMI Basics provides the opportunity for mutual support and positive impact. You can experience compassion and reinforcement from people who relate to your experiences. Through your participation, you have the opportunity to help others grow.

Support for these classes provided in part by grants from:
Hammill ACF Shield-Ayres Foundation hopeandgrace

Resources for Families

Ask the Doctor

NAMI’s Medical Director, Dr. Ken Duckworth, answers a few of the most commonly asked questions by parents and other caregivers of children and adolescents with mental illness. View the video!

Kids in the House: the Ultimate Parenting Resource 

Search and learn from over 8,000 videos from top experts and parents, include NAMI’s Medical Director, Dr. Ken Duckworth.

Sample Record Keeping System

NAMI Child and Adolescent Center (CAAC): Information for Parents and Other Caregivers

Families Share Their Thoughts on Effective Communication

The Family Experience with Primary Care Physicians and Staff

Starting a Conversation on Children’s Mental Health

Understanding Your Child’s Anxiety-infographic

Lost at School by Dr. Ross W. Greene, Ph. D – How We Can Help Kids with Behavioral Challenges

Lives in the Balance – Non Profit by Dr. Greene with Free Resources