An association of families with mentally ill kin has begun a project modeled after a British program to train therapists who can provide mental health services in people's homes.

Because the families of people with mental illnesses are often exhausted, therapists should be able to meet them at home and decide how best to support them, said Chihiro Adachi, 40, an experienced therapist in the field.

Adachi works for a nursing-care firm in Ichikawa, Chiba Prefecture, that dispatches therapists to care for people with mental illnesses at their homes on a regular basis. Working jointly with doctors, therapists meet the patients and take time to speak with their families.