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History

The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) is a nonprofit, grassroots, self-help, support and advocacy organization of consumers, families, and friends of people with severe mental illnesses, such as schizophrenia, major depression, bipolar disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and anxiety disorders.

Founded in 1979, NAMI has more than 210,000 members who seek equitable services for people with severe mental illnesses, which are known to be physical brain disorders. Working on the national, state, and local levels, NAMI provides education about severe brain disorders, supports increased funding for research, and advocates for adequate health insurance, housing, rehabilitation, and jobs for people with serious psychiatric illnesses.

In addition to 1200 state and local affiliates in the United States, NAMI has affiliates in the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Canada, and American Samoa, and has helped start sister organizations in Australia, Japan, and the Ukraine.

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