June 29, 2015

By Luna Greenstein

Attendees at the 2014 NAMI Convention

The NAMI National Convention is just around the corner. There is a lot that goes on during a NAMI convention so do your best to be prepared before you arrive in San Francisco. Here are are few ideas to help you prepare. (Even if you can't come, there are ways for you to stay connected with what's happening!)

  1. Download the 2015 NAMI National Convention mobile app. Get access to the entire program on your phone. To get the app:

1) Go to your mobile app store on your iPhone, android, or iPad device and search for “Guidebook, Inc.”

2) Download the Guidebook, Inc. app with the blue and white “g” logo on it.

3) Open the app and click “Get your first Guide.”

4) Search for NAMI and click on “NAMI 2015 National Convention.”

5) Once it is loaded, select it to enter the app.

6) Each time you open Guidebook, you’ll see the convention app on your screen for easy access.

  1. Become familiar with the program. Know all of the different things going on during convention and where they’re taking place. Make list of the speakers, presenters, events, Zumba classes and meeting you need to attend. Know where the bathrooms are and where you can get snacks and coffee!
  2. Create a schedule of the events and speakers you would like to see the most. There are 197 speakers presenting at convention this year, so you have plenty to choose from! Take a look at the presentation slides to help you decide. 
  3. Coordinate with other people you know who are going. Talk to people who are going from your NAMI State Organization or Affiliate to see which events they are planning on attending. That way you can go to different sessions and share notes with one another. Even if you don't get to see everything, there’s no need to worry. Nearly all sessions will be recorded and will be available to order on CD. So for those who cannot attend, you can still get the audio recordings.
  4. Schedule some free time. Make sure you have time to explore the exhibit hall, visit with people from around the country and enjoy San Francisco!
  5. Follow NAMI on social media. NAMI will be on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram posting pictures and get updates before, during and after the convention. Also, don’t forget to use #NAMICon15 when you post!
  6. Set aside time just to relax. You'll be learning and meeting new people every day and it can be tiring. Set some time aside to take a break and recharge so you can be energized and ready to go each day.
  7. Check your trip details! Check your flight, check the weather and know how to get to the hotel. Don’t forget to pack cash, snacks and any other necessities. And of course, have a fantastic time!

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