Skip to Content

NAMI El Paso encourages community conversation about mental health

NAMI El Paso encourages community to continue conversation surrounding mental health

EL PASO, Texas-- The month of May is Mental Health Awareness Month and NAMI El Paso is encouraging the community to continue the conversation of mental health beyond this month.

"There's different reasons for the stigma and it's one of the leading causes and reasons that individuals don't seek help," said Isidro Torres, executive director for NAMI El Paso.

Torres began his journey with NAMI El Paso as a volunteer back in 2013.

"I fell in love with the mission of NAMI El Paso because of the experiences I've had with stigma surrounding mental health in my life especially being in the Hispanic machismo culture," said Torres.

Eight years later he is now the executive director for the nation's largest grassroots mental health organization.

"Our work is focused on ensuring that we are able to learn from our shared experiences and bring awareness to mental health and create empathy," said Torres, "So a lot of our volunteers and staff have their personal experiences that they go out and share with our community."

During the pandemic, NAMI El Paso noticed an increase in need of resources for our youth.

"Just on the fact of not being able to see friends or having to do school from behind a computer screen for eight hours a day being at home being isolated," explained Torres, "We want to make sure that we're providing support and help for what they're going through and connecting them with the resources they need."

Although the pandemic has impacted NAMI El Paso's fundraising events, they continue their efforts to end the stigma behind mental health.

"I think theres also a cultural impact when it comes to the stigma in the hispanic culture," explained Torres, " We really want to talk about our problems in our own circles and we really don't want to let people in like behavioral health professionals and that can cause a huge reason for the stigma."

NAMI El Paso provides free resources for family, friends and those dealing with mental health issues. For more information on the free resources available in the community, click here.

Article Topic Follows: Health

Jump to comments ↓

Iris Lopez

Iris Lopez is a weathercaster and reporter for ABC-7.


KVIA ABC 7 is committed to providing a forum for civil and constructive conversation.

Please keep your comments respectful and relevant. You can review our Community Guidelines by clicking here

If you would like to share a story idea, please submit it here.

Skip to content