Time Magazine Cover Story on Depression and Anxiety Features Project AWARE Youth
A dozen teens involved with Project AWARE shared their stories about anxiety and depression with Time Magazine. The article, appearing as the November 7th cover story, features 3 of the youth including Faith-Ann Bishop, writer / co-writer of 4 Project AWARE films. Her movies, based in part on personal experiences with depression, anxiety, and self harm, include The Road Back and a better place.
In 2015, about 3 million teens ages 12 to 17 had had at least one major depressive episode in the past year, according to the Department of Health and Human Services. More than 2 million report experiencing depression that impairs their daily function. About 30% of girls and 20% of boys–totaling 6.3 million teens–have had an anxiety disorder, according to data from the National Institute of Mental Health.
The Time article states “One of the most powerful things Faith-Ann did to escape the cycle of anxiety, depression and self-harm was to channel her feelings into something creative. As part of the Project AWARE teen program in Maine, she wrote and directed a short film about anxiety and depression in teens called The Road Back. More than 30 kids worked on the project, and they became a support system for one another as she continued to heal.” Acadia Hospital in Bangor, Maine co-produced the 32-minute movie.
For her part, Faith-Ann (pictured on Time’s cover) wanted to make a difference not only for her peers, but also for parents. She offers “Please talk to your kids and family members about depression, anxiety and self harm. Raise awareness. The best thing you can do is educate yourself and help others feel less alone.”
Susanna Schrobsdorff, author of the story and an editor at Time, contacted Project AWARE after seeing, a better place. online. She was hoping to talk with teens willing to share their story. Project AWARE teens met with Susanna at Engine in Biddeford Maine and shared their wisdom and truth about how these issues impacted them. All of these young people wanted to make a difference and provided important background for the story.
Programs like Project AWARE can change lives by offering teenagers a supportive, non-judgmental community that fosters creativity and collaboration. Projects have involved hundreds of teenagers who have created over 20 PSAs and 12 short movies about issues they have faced including bullying, self-harm, suicide, anxiety, depression, opiates, underage drinking and more.
Subscribe online to Time and read the article here or pick a copy up soon at your nearest newsstand. You can also see some PA youth-created movies here, and contact Project AWARE by visiting www.projectaware.net.