Poet and Activist Center Stage at Mental Illness Stigma-Busting Event

Top Quote NAMIWalks Kicks Off Saturday Oct 3, 2015 at Grand Park, Event Lawn Downtown Los Angeles. End Quote
  • Los Angeles-Long Beach, CA (1888PressRelease) September 22, 2015 - NAMI LACC (the National Alliance on Mental Illness Los Angeles County Council) will host the 12th annual NAMIWalks LA County on Saturday October 3, 2015 (8am - 12noon) in downtown Los Angeles.

    Master of Ceremonies Yashi Brown is an accomplished poet and mental health activist. She was diagnosed with bipolar disorder at age 24 and has become a vocal advocate for NAMI and for ending the stigma of mental illness. She is the niece of singer/icon Michael Jackson and daughter of Rebbie Jackson. "NAMI helped to educate and support my family. Early treatment and the support of my family has been very important to me."

    Yashi has just recorded an audiobook of her previously published collection of poetry, "Black Daisy in a White Limousine." Her activism and her art intertwine in her People of Poetry (POP) workshops at Metropolitan State Hospital in Downey, California, where mentally ill offenders are incarcerated for minor offenses. "The feedback from the inmates has been overwhelming. The staff report that they open up after the workshops, that they are tremendously moved by poetry."

    "I'm excited and thrilled to be a part of this event that helps makes such a difference for families who are impacted by the effects of mental illness," said Brown.

    NAMIWalks is an annual 5K walk and is the largest fundraising event for NAMI's 12 local affiliates in Los Angeles. There are over 210,000 members in over 1,200 NAMI affiliate groups in the United States, Mexico, Puerto Rico, the US Virgin Islands, American Somoa, and Guam.

    Funds raised through NAMIWalks donations and sponsorships ensure Los Angeles area local affiliates can continue to provide educational programs, support groups, resources and anti-stigma mental health advocacy FREE of charge for people living with mental illness and their families. The goal of NAMIWalks is to end stigma and to raise awareness of mental illness.

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