Dr. Sunny Chieh Cheng, Board Member
By Marc Anthony Cisneros
Edited by Cameron Safai, Mychael Hodges, Sarah Jensen, and Nicolle Osborn, UW Bothell School of Business
Edited by Maddy Noonan
While some struggle to find motivation to pull through each day, Sunny finds her motivation from her clinical practice and research. Dr. Sunny Chieh Cheng’s clinical background is in psychiatric and mental health nursing. She is a professor with a PhD from the University of Washington, and makes the time to become involved by contributing as an active board member with the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Seattle.
Sunny has always been passionate about helping others. While living in Taiwan, she noticed organizations similar to NAMI Seattle began to form and cater to public and mental health. Since moving to the Seattle area and discovering NAMI Seattle, she has been serving on the community board for over a year. Sunny’s current focus is providing suicide preventative materials by the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention to educational staff of community boards and community health workers.
Sunny’s Work at NAMI Seattle
One of Sunny’s mentors at the University of Washington School of Nursing recommended NAMI. Sunny attended one of NAMI Seattle’s support groups and was inspired by the community she saw there. She has been involved with NAMI Seattle ever since. All support groups coordinated by NAMI Seattle are open to the public, and held regularly in multiple neighborhoods across town. For a connection to the NAMI Seattle support group meeting schedule, click here.
Sunny’s program of research and community services focuses on early identification and intervention for youth who are at risk of developing mental health conditions. For optimal results when treating a mental illness, early detection and timely treatment are essential. Unfortunately due to gaps in the mental health system and obstacles that people face to get to treatment, it’s not always possible to address these issues immediately.
Due to these gaps in our mental health system, Sunny applies and advocates for funding to find the upstream causes and symptoms of mental illness, to explore how patients cope with the symptoms before seeking help, and to understand the needs from family caregivers in order to educate and support them in local communities.
Show Your Support – Become a Member of NAMI Seattle
Like Sunny, you can make a difference and help save a life. There are many ways to contribute to NAMI Seattle. If you are interested in volunteering, visit their volunteer application page where they offer a vast selection of ways to be involved.