The Well Beings campaign addresses the critical health needs of Americans through broadcast content, original digital content, and impactful local events. The multi-year campaign, created by WETA Washington, D.C., brings together partners from across the country, including patients, families, caregivers, teachers, medical and mental health professionals, social service agencies, private foundations, filmmakers, corporations and media sponsors, to create awareness and resources for better health for all.
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About the Youth Mental Health Project
The Well Beings campaign debuts with the Youth Mental Health Project, which will include a major public television film – tentatively titled Hiding in Plain Sight: Youth Mental Illness – executive produced by Ken Burns, as well as content from PBS NewsHour Student Reporting Labs, American Public Media, and more. The project also includes a 34-event Well Beings Tour in partnership with public media stations across the county (virtual and/or in-person based on public health conditions). Each tour event will consist of a resource fair and information from local community organizations, art performances, and panel discussions with local youth and subject matter experts.
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The Youth Mental Health Project is a major public media multi-platform project to address mental health conditions. As mental health concerns often first present themselves in youth, this project primarily centers the needs of this cohort. With public media’s reach through television, radio and digital content, and its community-based network for public engagement — the Youth Mental Health Project is raising awareness about mental health challenges, addressing the stigmatization that often prevents people from seeking care, focusing on the lived experiences of individuals dealing with mental health conditions, and fostering and convening ways for communities to support each other and encourage compassion.
The Well Beings National Tour
The Well Beings campaign includes a nationwide Well Beings Tour hosted in partnership with local public media stations to present impactful experiences that connect audiences with mental health resources in the local community, strengthen community connections, and destigmatize mental health challenges. The Tour features moderated public discussions that share information and volunteer opportunities from local community and national organizations. The Tour is fostering new conversations about mental health through these local events — live or virtual, based on local public health conditions.
Longtime WETA production partner Ken Burns is the executive producer of a major new public television documentary, tentatively titled Hiding in Plain Sight: Youth Mental Illness. The film, anticipated to premiere in Spring 2022, explores how young people are addressing their mental health needs and examines the impact of mental health stigma and stress on today’s youth. Erik Ewers and Christopher Loren Ewers are the co-directors, Julie Coffman is the producer, and David Blistein is the writer..
A WETA digital documentary, Brave Teens, a character-driven verité film premiering in 2021, also explores themes of youth mental health, substance abuse and mental illness stigma as high school students share their stories. A multi-part digital series, Out of the Dark, slated to premiere in 2021, shares the stories of people whose lives have been touched and changed by mental health challenges, to help destigmatize mental health conditions.
About The Caregiving Project
A four-part prime-time documentary series that will frame the realities of day-to-day caregiving. Currently in development and sponsored by Care.com.