The Trail Mental Health Drop-in Family Support group was formed in response to several human services providers and family members identifying the need to re-establish a family support group in Trail. Trail Family and Individual Resource (FAIR) Centre staff, with co-facilitator Melissa Michaud began the group in July of 2017, scheduling the meetings to run on the first and third Wednesday of every month, from 6-8pm at the Trail FAIR office—2079 Columbia Ave.

The group is intended for adults. Referrals are not required, although on most occasions the person, or someone that they are connected to, contacts us prior to attending the first session, so that they can get more information about what they can expect from the group.  The group is open to anyone, (not only family members), who is a significant support to someone in their life that is struggling with any type of mental health problem. Although it is not expressly included in the group’s title, this includes people who support someone with an addiction, in recognition of the frequency that substance use/addictions often exist at the same time. The primary goal of the group is to create a supportive space, regardless of the presenting issue.

The group follows the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) model used for Peer-Support led groups, which allows for the group members themselves to support each other, share similar experiences, and discusses potential solutions. Our role as facilitators is to provide background support of the group process—ensuring that each member has adequate time to share, and that the ground rules that the group members have established are being followed in order to maintain a safe space. In addition to this, we provide information on local resources, and occasionally arrange to bring in speakers and present workshops based on member interest.

We invite anyone to connect with us using the contacts listed below for further information:

Lisa Melenka, Program Coordinator
Mental Health & Substance Use
Consumer, Family & Peer Support Program
a program of Trail FAIR Society 
250-364-2326 ext.225   
LMelenka@trailfair.ca

Melissa Michaud
Mental Health Family Support and Education      
BC Schizophrenia Society
250-505-2976
nelson@bcss.org