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NAMI New Jersey 2011 Conference- My Experience

Dr. Rebecca Roma and myself attended the NAMI New Jersey conference: "Shaping the Future of Mental Healthcare," which took place earlier today. NAMI New Jersey screened the new Schizophrenia documentary that we were both featured in called, "Living with Schizophrenia: A Call for Hope and Recovery." We were accompanied by a few Janssen executives and associates, Janssen funded and produced the documentary. It was a pleasure meeting Dr. Roma because I discovered some of her volunteer work projects and reason for getting in the medical field among other interesting conversation.

I had a great experience! I listened to some great speakers and among them was Dr. Robin Eubanks, who had a lot humor, energy, and really got the audience talking- it was interactive. Also I was able to get my questions answered in a workshop, "Choices in Recovery" (a Janssen program) about Schizophrenia. Overall, I had an amazing experience- having the opportunity to meet Dr. Roma and to be a part a wonderful documentary and NAMI New Jersey conference.

For more info about Schizophrenia visit Embracing My Mind, Inc., NAMI, Schizophrenia Society of Nova Scotia (Canada).


Julie Gammack said…
Ashley. I love your blog.
I just started one a week ago to chronicle my journey in understanding my 27 year old son's schizophrenia. Wish you two could meet each other.

I'd love to know your thoughts :

Julie Gammack
Ashley Smith said…
Hi Julie,

Thank you for the invitation to your blog. I will check it out.

Best regards,
Ashley Smith
Leslie Segev said…
Hi Ashley,
I am trying to help my sister who has schizophrenia with paranoia. I would love to contact you to learn more about your journey to recovery in the hope that you could help us with her recovery.

Any help would be greatly appreciated!
Leslie Segev
Ashley Smith said…
Hi Leslie,

Sorry for delay... I enjoy sharing my story and helping others. You may contact me by email at

Best regards,
Ashley Smith
Anonymous said…
I recently watched a very inspiring documentary about a schizophrenic artist Alan Streets, which I believe should be mentioned.
“My Name is Alan, and I Paint Pictures” is a film about the schizophrenic Artist Alan Streets.
He is a streets painter who specializes in painting buildings in the street that are right in front of him. He travels all over the US and paints daily.
The documentary My Name is Alan, and I Paint Pictures focuses on Alan’s life as he works to break his way into the professional art world.
The film also addresses larger issues which directly or indirectly affect Alan. Subjects addressed include the treatment and diagnosis of Paranoid Schizophrenia; the therapeutic benefits of art for mental illness. Alan Streets sells his paintings on his website at
Alan’s life and his daily struggles with schizophrenia is actually very inspiring.

It's great to hear how you are coping with schizophrenia. Blog therapy, as opposed to typical call for therapy is certainly one great way to surpass the hardships. This is truly inspiring.
Anonymous said…
PLEASE can you email me with the contact information about the artist Alan Streets.

I am a NAMI volunteer and mental health advocate and consumer, as well.
My son 31 has schizophrenia and perhaps he would like to learn more about recovery blogs.
Thanks, Susan Panaro

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