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 Ontario, Canada


Quite often people find themselves in crisis as a result of dealing with mental illness in their midst and the immediate help that can be offered by a support group is what is needed and appropriate.  In a supportive and confidential environment, family members, friends and partners receive support from each other by sharing their experience, strength and hope while caring for a loved one who has a mental illness.  Scroll down for information; contact us and talk to someone who’s been there.


  • Belleville
  • Brantford
  • Ottawa

NAMI Support Group Facilitation Training

Organizations interested in training family members to become Support Group Facilitators should contact Madeleine Bertrand, Director, Family-to-Family Programs by email at familytofamily.on@bell.net or leave a message at 613-737-7791.


Growing Forward Support Group


  • In Belleville, the Growing Forward Support Group meets on the 1st Thursday of the month at Mental Health Services,
    3 Applewood Drive, Belleville, Ontario, 2nd floor, from 6:30 pm to 9:30 pm.

All facilitators are NAMI facilitators, and/or NAMI graduates. Each of our facilitators offers a very unique skill set and talent.

Click here to download a copy of the Growing Forward Support Group brochure.

For more information, please contact Lorraine Pyle, RSSW, Growing Forward Support Group Coordinator at 613-962-3480.


Families Caring, Families Sharing Support Group:  The group has been meeting on 2nd Tuesday of every month (except July and August) from 7:00 – 8:30 p.m.

For more information, or to attend the group, please contact Pat Buckley, Support Group Coordinator at  519-754-0134 or e-mail: familiessupportingfamilies@hotmail.com, or Lill Petrella, CMHA at  519-752-2998, ext. 112, email lill@cmhabrant.on.ca.

Ottawa, Ontario

Family to Family Support Group:  The Orleans Support Group is based on the NAMI model and facilitated by a volunteer NAMI teacher, meets on the 3rd Thursday of each month (except July and December) from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Orleans United Church, 1111 Orleans Blvd.  For more information about this support group, contact Madeleine Bertrand by email at f2fontario@bell.net.

  • Parents' Lifelines of Eastern Ontario (PLEO) offers 4 support groups at various locations around Ottawa, catering to the needs of parents and caregivers of children with various ages.  Please follow the link fore more details: http://www.pleo.on.ca/?page_id=24. Alternatively, for more information, call 1-855-775-7005 (toll free), 613-321-3211 in Ottawa, email info@pleo.on.ca or visit their web site at www.pleo.on.ca.


  • The Royal Family Information Sessions offered by social workers at the ROH.  These sessions are usually free of charge and frequently held on the grounds of the Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre at 1145 Carling Avenue in Ottawa, unless otherwise specified.

The Education Series: runs for four consecutive Monday evenings from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. and deals with topics such as the Mental Health Act, the hospital system, symptoms, how to help the person with the illness, how to care for yourself, and community resources. There are three groups: (1) schizophrenia, (2) mood disorders and (3) anxiety disorders. For more information, contact: Donna Horner at 613.722.6521 ext 6421, Amanda Telford 613.722.6521, ext 6442.


Coping with Mental Illness Series: family and friends who wish to go into the aspects of coping with illness in greater detail meet on the 1st and 3rd Tuesdays of each month, from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m., at the Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre, Room 1420.  For more information, call: Vanessa Morel 613 722-6521, ext. 6207.


  • The Schizophrenia Society of Ontario (SSO), Ottawa Region is a non-profit family based organization providing support, information and education, public awareness and advocacy to families and friends of people with schizophrenia.  For more information, contact the SSO Ottawa Region office at 613-722-6521, Cynthia Clark ext. 7776 or Sheila Deighton ext. 7775 or email Cynthia, Family & Community Coordinator at cclark@schizophrenia.on.ca. You can also visit the website of the Schizophrenia Society of Ontario at www.schizophrenia.on.ca.

  • NEW: The Oasis in Kanata is a program that offers information and support for caregivers in Kanata and its surrounding areas.   Living with mental illness can be as challenging for those close to the individuals as for the individuals themselves. For more information, visit their website at:  www.theoasiskanata.ca.

Please click here for a listing of other support groups in the Ottawa area such as Borderline Personality Disorders, Mood Disorders, Anxiety Disorders as well as resources for individuals with a mental illness.