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Learn. Connect. Support Mental Health.

NAMI Eastside's annual fundraiser was held in Redmond on October 5, 2023, and served as a reminder of the healing power of togetherness. In our first year at the new Together Center, a first-of-its-kind take on community support, we chose to reflect on the theme of togetherness.

One of the highlights of the luncheon was when NAMI Eastside presented U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy with the Mental Health Champion Award for 2023. In this video, he accepts the award and talks about the importance of human connection and the crucial role it, along with community, can play in the healing process. The luncheon's discourse was influenced by U.S. Surgeon General Vivek H. Murthy's Advisory on Our Epidemic of Loneliness and Isolation and his book, "Together".

Special Guests

Surgeon General Vivek Murthy

Dr. Vivek H. Murthy was confirmed by the U.S. Senate in March 2021 to serve as the 21st Surgeon General of the United States. As the Nation's Doctor, he took the office's mission seriously to help lay the foundation for a healthier country, and he has been especially diligent about safeguarding the mental health of our Nation's youth. 

Raised in Miami, Dr. Murthy received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Harvard, and his MD from the Yale School of Medicine. He is a renowned physician, research scientist, entrepreneur, and even a mango aficionado, but notably, he is the author of the bestselling book Together: "The Healing Power of Human Connection in a Sometimes Lonely World".

Featured Panel

State Senator Manka Dhingra

45th Legislative District

Councilmember Sarah Perry

King County Council

District 3

Brook Buettner

Executive Director,

Regional Crisis Response Agency

Coming Together

This year's theme of Coming Together is inspired by the times we are living in, and a call for us to recognize a real mental health crisis and loneliness epidemic in America. Like many growing trends, the loneliness damaging the mental (and physical) health of many was accelerated by the pandemic.

 

Our luncheon will be focused on addressing this issue, and is influenced by U.S. Surgeon General Vivek H. Murthy's book "Together: The Healing Power of Human Connection in a sometimes Lonely World".

 

In his book, Dr. Murthy tells stories of loneliness he encountered across the world. He traveled the country and abroad to talk to everyone from scientists to children, and looked to the latest science to better understand why people are feeling so disconnected. It's no surprise, that in our increasingly complex world, Murthy found equally complex forces contributing to loneliness.

 

While complex, NAMI Eastside is committed to playing our role in the community healing process, and it is centered around connection, community, truly hearing, and truly sharing. Our support groups and classes are an amazing way to fight this epidemic with genuine connection, but most people have never heard of NAMI. With this luncheon, we intend to do our part to educate, learn, and inspire. We also hope those that have grown alongside us can help us continue to fuel the fire. 

 

Humans are social creatures: in this simple and obvious fact lies both the problem and the solution to the current crisis of loneliness.

That obvious, but bold statement from Murthy is exactly what we mean to dive into this October. We might not solve it over lunch, but it's worth trying. Join us.

Support Our Work

This year’s theme of “Coming Together" alludes to one of the core missions of this conference and NAMI Eastside. The Luncheon is built to raise awareness and reduce stigma surrounding mental health for all age groups. Reminding people to speak their mind is not only encouragement to be open and honest about your mental health, but it is also recognition that prior generations can learn from this one.

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