NAMI Monterey County

Providing Education, Support and Information

‘Trauma & Immigration’ Event a Success

About 100 people learned about the anxieties and fears they may be experiencing as a result of their immigration experience on June 22 in Salinas.

The event, sponsored by NAMI Monterey County, was “Latinos and Mental Health: Trauma & Immigration, as part of Minority Mental Health Awareness Month.

“There’s a lot of collective trauma going on and our kids have been affected too, and there’s a lot of stigma with mental illness, specifically with the Latino community,” said one of the attendees.

The free event featured presentations by Maria Nava, a psychologist with the Monterey County Behavioral Health Department, and Magnolia Zarraga, an attorney who specializes in immigration issues. Monterey County Herald reporter Claudia Melendez-Salinas led the discussion.

The outreach and education event was not a political forum, but rather an informational community presentation to better understand the mental health affects immigrant communities face as a result of immigration. It was held at Jesse G. Sanchez Elementary School in Salinas.

NAMI Monterey County’s forum attracted significant media coverage, from KION-TV, Telemundo, Univision and the Salinas Californian.


Upcoming Classes for Family Members, Peers, Providers … English and Spanish!

Call 831-422-6264 to register now. Spaces are limited.

Bridges of Hope

Spiritual leaders of all denominations are invited to attend an informative presentation designed to provide education, support, resources and human connections for those dealing with mental illness in their faith communities.

The four-hour training, called Bridges of Hope, is scheduled from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. March 23 at The Grille at Calvary Chapel, 3001 Salinas Highway (Highway 68). The training is free, and lunch will be provided by The Grille for a suggested donation of $10.

“This training will give leaders and staff the knowledge and skills to feel better equipped serving those with mental illness and others touched by it in their congregations,” said Bonnie Bufkin, vice president of NAMI Monterey County, which is presenting the training.

All faith leaders and appropriate staff are welcome. For more information or to RSVP, contact Deanna Rivas at 831-402-4939 or, or Bonnie Bufkin at 831-521-5597 or

Celebrating a Fresh Start in 2017

The coming of a new year is a good time to commit to better health, improved lifestyles and better mental health.

The staff and volunteers at NAMI Monterey County are ready, willing and able to help. With our new office, our additional staff and our trained volunteers, NAMI is committed to providing even more classes, offering more support, training more volunteers and spreading more information about mental health services.

Return to our webpage often for updates on available classes and opportunities. Like us on Facebook. Or send us your email address to be included in our email newsletters and our occasional updates. You are also welcome to visit us at 1020 Merrill St., Suite 1015, in Salinas during regular business hours, or call us at 422-6264.

Meanwhile, the national NAMI organization has announced its aggressive legislative strategy for the coming year.

The 2017 legislative priorities are as follows:

  1. Invest in Mental Health and Innovation
  2. Promote Early Intervention
  3. Improve Integration of Care
  4. Support Caregivers, Military Service Members and Veterans
  5. End The Criminalization of Mental Illness

To learn more, see


Our family support group has moved to Salinas. English group.

When:  3rd Saturday of the month
Time: 3:00 p.m. to 4:30p.m.
New Location: NAMI Monterey County office,
1020 Merrill Street, Suite 1015
Salinas, CA 93901

NAMI Family Support Group is a free confidential support group for family members, friends, and partners of loved ones living with a mental illness in a compassionate environment.


Donate to NAMI

Please consider a donation to NAMI Monterey County. Your contribution helps NAMI continue its key missions to support and educate consumers, families and others struggling with mental illness.

You can make your contributions conveniently through PayPal. Use the button below.