About Town: September 15, 2020

NAMIWalks Big Island goes virtual

Each year, the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) brings together community, family members and friends to raise mental health awareness and funds through NAMIWalks events across the country. This year NAMIWalks is “going virtual.”


On Oct. 10, NAMI Big Island will participate in NAMIWalks Your Way: A National Day of Hope. This day also marks World Mental Health Day and the last day of Mental Illness Awareness Week.

Instead of walking a 5K together at Hilo’s Liliuokalani Gardens, participants will choose an activity of their choice and join virtually with nearly 70 other NAMIWalks and hundreds of thousands of mental health advocates from across the country.

Many participants still plan to walk, using their treadmill or going outside in the backyard or through a local park — all while taking precautions to stay safe. Others plan to hula-hoop, flip pancakes, practice yoga or do another activity they enjoy. They will share their activities on social media and follow NAMI Hawaii’s program that includes mental health facts and participant activities.

To join NAMIWalks Your Way, visit www.namiwalks.org/bigisland. There is no registration fee, but fundraising is encouraged. Funds raised support NAMI Big Island’s free local mental health family education programs, family support groups and other services.

The organization announced that NAMI Family &Friends, a free four-hour seminar that informs family and friends who have loved ones with a mental health condition how to best support them, will be held from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Sept. 26 and Oct. 3 via Zoom.

For more information, visit www.namihawaii.org. For questions on the virtual walk, contact Walk Manager Susan McGovern at (808) 238-0074. For NAMI programs and services, contact Kathy Hammes at (808) 959-2426.

HIHS continues spay-neuter programs

The Hawaii Island Humane Society is providing weekly spay and neuter services on Tuesdays at its Keaau Shelter on Tuesdays and on Thursdays at the Animal Community Center in North Kona.

In addition, the organization is providing spay and neuter services to the Waimea community on the first Thursday of the month and is planning outreach for communities in Hamakua, Kohala, and Ocean View.

All surgeries are performed by licensed veterinarians utilizing the organizations Mobile Spay &Neuter ‘Waggin. Space is limited and the waitlist is long. Schedule an appointment by logging on to www.hihs.org/services/spay-neuter-information. Due to limited space, the program is current unable to accommodate drop-ins.


For more information, visit www.hihs.org or call (808) 329-1175.

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