NAM Recognizes Mental Health Awareness Month

By: Brian Carr
| Published 05/20/2022


HOUSTON, TX -- Each year millions of Americans struggle, often silently, with mental health challenges. This month Northwest Assistance Ministries (NAM) joins the national movement to raise awareness about mental health.

Throughout the month NAM has offered free community events including a Community Learning Circle presented by The Harris Center and a film screening of “Wisdom of Trauma,” exploring the root of human pain, and the source of healing.

NAM’s next community event will be a Parenting Skills group to provide basic parenting skills using the STEP (Systematic Training for Effective Parenting) structured curriculum designed to help strengthen and enhance parent/child relationships and family mental health. The first of eight weekly sessions will be on May 24, 2022, from 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. on the 4th floor of NAM’s main building at 15555 Kuykendahl Road, Houston, Texas 77090. To reserve a spot in this free parenting skills group email

In addition to hosting sessions addressing parenting skills, NAM is also working this month on the development of a room dedicated to Child Play Therapy. Play is the language of children, and they are better served when mental health professionals meet them at their level to process what they cannot express through words. A room dedicated to play therapy creates a sense of security and allows children to comfortably express their emotions.

Those battling a mental health crisis should not have to suffer alone. NAM’s Behavioral Health Services program aims to help individuals and families suffering from mental health problems care for themselves and loved ones by providing counseling, group discussions and community education. Areas of behavioral health services include:

• Depression / Anxiety

• Parenting / Family Counseling

• Marriage Counseling

• Substance Abuse

• Grief Counseling

“One step towards mental health can simply be talking with someone who is trained to listen without judgment,” says NAM Director of Behavioral Health, Candace Runaas. “NAM now provides the opportunity for the community to have more access to counseling and therapy services in order to process things like career choices, grief and loss, marriage and family conflict, self-discovery, and major life transitions.”

The program receives referrals from all of NAM’s programs as well as direct client requests. Thanks to significant funding from the Houston Methodist Hospital Foundation and partnership with Our Lady of the Lake University Marriage and Family Therapy Program, NAM is able to offer these services to the community at no cost.

For more information about NAM’s behavioral services and upcoming events please visit

Northwest Assistance Ministries is a non-profit, community-based social service agency that strives to meet basic human needs through Neighbors Helping Neighbors. NAM provides assistance in areas such as food, shelter, health, education and domestic violence awareness and intervention. During its last fiscal year, NAM touched the lives of more than 136,000 people through its many programs and services.

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