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September 29th 2015:Special Encore Presentation: Growing Up with a Mother with Schizophrenia

Anika Francis was first exposed to schizophrenia at the age of three when her mother, Sakeenah Francis, was diagnosed with it. Sakeenah lived in and out of mental hospitals. For the past fifteen years, she’s been recovering after hitting rock bottom and choosing to stay on her medicine for her sake and her family’s. They both discuss their careers and work. Anika talks about her book, “Love's All That Makes Sense”, http://bridgeross.com/francis.html. Sakeenah explains the speeches she makes for the National Alliance on Mental Illness, http://www.nami.org/. They describe their experiences with

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Anika Francis

Anika Francis was first exposed to schizophrenia at the age of three when her mother was diagnosed with it. She understands the issues facing children of mentally ill parents. Early on, she experienced schizophrenia’s ravaging affects as she tried to support her mother and cope with the emotional roller coaster created by her mother’s illness. To make sense of her world, she cultivated a powerful drive and focus. She excelled academically and went to an Ivy League college where she discovered her interest in writing, http://bridgeross.com/francis.html, and traveling. Her love of learning and writing led to a career developing training programs. Based in Atlanta, she owns a company that focus
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Sakeenah Francis

Sakeenah Francis developed schizophrenia over thirty years ago. Like many with schizophrenia, she struggled to cope with her illness and was in and out of mental hospitals. Devastated by her mental illness, she went from homecoming queen to homeless. After walking down the middle of a busy street during a relapse, she hit rock bottom and made a conscious choice to stay on her medicine for her sake and her family’s. She has been in recovery for the past fifteen years. Passionate about raising awareness about mental illness and eliminating stigma, she is a mental health advocate. She served on the board of trustees for the Bridgeway Mental Health Center for two years and is currently serving o
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