Sioux Falls mental health support group forms in hopes to meet growing need
There are changes in the landscape of the mental health support community in Sioux Falls. The group NAMI Sioux Falls has lost affiliation and may restructure while the state chapter remains intact.
A Sioux Falls group has formed to fill the need. The secretary of state has just approved Empire Mental Health Support as a domestic non-profit.
President Jerry Zeigler says they will offer support, and provide information, referrals, and advocate for those in need of mental health care.
"To work with the community and mental health and mental illness and bringing it to where it's not a bad thing to have, and try to remove the stigma of having a mental illness," said Zeigler.
For now they socialize and organize online.
"Zoom helps a little. But, face to face is better," said Zeigler.
Phyllis Arends represented NAMI and was on the task force to plan for the upcoming Sioux Falls triage center.
"Mental illnesses are an illness that just affects the brain instead of a different part of the body."
During an especially difficult time of the stress of pandemic, it's important to reach out," said Arends.
"We're here to try to help people live with mental illness rather than against it," said Zeigler.
To receive information on their zoom meetings, e-mail EmpireMHS@outlook.com