NAMI Delaware welcomes new staff serving Sussex County
NAMI Delaware announced the addition of two staff members to the NAMI Delaware Education & Advocacy Team.
Jacqueline Contreras and Estevan Garcia joined the staff in July and are learning support, education and advocacy for those affected by mental illness in Delaware. Their work will focus primarily on serving the mental health support, education and advocacy needs of Hispanic communities in Sussex County, which includes staffing the NAMI Delaware Spanish language Help Line.
Contreras joins NAMI Delaware after working and volunteering in Sussex County for the past five years. She has studied criminal justice and is interested in its intersection with mental health services.
“As a child, my parents immigrated to this country with the desire for a better future for my siblings and me,” said Contreras. “I am a mom of two wonderful children who I work to raise to be mindful and caring adults. Outside of my mom world, I see myself as an advocate, educator, but more importantly a student of the needs of the Hispanic community in Delaware.”
Contreras can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Garcia joins NAMI Delaware inspired by personal experience.
“I grew up facing challenges with mental illness, homelessness and substance use disorder, all of which I could attribute to mental illness and the lack of knowledge and the stigma surrounding it,” said Garcia.
In 2017, Garcia became a peer recovery specialist at the ACE Center. He has managed a sober living house and supported those experiencing homelessness in Sussex County.
“I’ve been fortunate enough to be able to use my life experiences to help others on paths similar to ones that I have walked,” said Garcia of his own recovery. “With NAMI, I am hoping to make an impact on our effort to combat stigma surrounding mental illness and do my part to make the world a place where our community embraces total wellness and where everyone is free to live to their potential.”
Garcia can be reached at email@example.com.
NAMI Delaware thanked the Arsht-Cannon Fund at the Delaware Community Foundation, whose support made it possible to expand these services in Sussex County. The Arsht-Cannon Fund focuses on partnering with Delaware’s Latinx communities and organizations that serve them to increase access to programming, and promote success and life-changing opportunities.
NAMI Delaware’s mission is “to support, educate and advocate until there is a cure for serious and persistent mental illness.” To reach NAMI Delaware’s Helpline, available during business hours Mondays through Fridays, call 888-427-2643; for Spanish, call 415-4356.
For more, visit namidelaware.org.