“I meet family members wherever they are and do whatever I can to help them effectively care for their loved ones with mental illness.”
Hope Starts HereMeet Zuleika Palmer
For nearly a decade, Zuleika has directed Catholic Charities’ Intensive Family Support Services (IFSS) in Burlington County. She is passionate about the need to support, encourage and provide respite to those caring for a loved one living with mental illness. Zuleika organizes workshops and trainings featuring mental health experts – psychiatrists, APNs, psychiatric social workers and gerontologists – to educate and empower families.
“Everything you read and hear about the challenges of living with a mental illness also applies to relatives and friends, including the stigma,” said Zuleika. She plans an annual dinner just before the Thanksgiving holiday where staff and volunteers serve up a buffet style meal, complete with homemade desserts, to IFSS families. “So many people said that this get-together helped them cope with the stressful holiday season that it has become a tradition,” said Zuleika.
“I will meet with family members wherever they are at and do whatever I can to help them cope and effectively care for their loved ones.”