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National Alliance on Mental Health Lane County: Steady housing can elevate stability

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EUGENE, Ore. -- A community forum is putting the focus on finding different housing options.

An event hosted by the National Alliance on Mental Illness in Lane County took place Wednesday night.

A panel of nine people representing for-profit agencies, non-profits, and commissioners presented different ideas to those in attendance.

Jennifer MacLean, Executive Director of NAMI Lane County, says it's hard for anyone to find affordable housing in Eugene and Springfield, and can be especially tough for those with mental illness.

She also said that steady housing can elevate stability in other areas of a person's life.

"Now they can see their primary care doctor, they can be with their family, they can possibly go back to work, they can go back to school," said MacLean. "They can be a part of our community."

NAMI holds a free community forum on the fourth Wednesday of every month.

Each meeting has a different topic, but with one goal: to educate, support, and advocate for people and loved ones living with mental health challenges.

"So, some individuals need a lot of support, some individuals need a little," said MacLean. "And it ebbs and flows. When you have a severe mental illness, it's not the same every day. There's manic-cycling and one month, one week, you might be in a different place; and that's what it's all about here with NAMI and the forums - supporting the individual and families with where they are today."

MacLean said the next meeting will be about supportive employment.

That meeting will be held at the Lane County Behavioral Health building from 6:30-8:30 p.m.

For more information, visit the NAMI Lane County Facebook page and website.

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