PBS’s This Emotional Life: Documentary Launches a Campaign of Hope
Millions of Americans struggle to find more meaning in their lives every day.
To help, Vulcan Productions and NOVA/WGBH brought together a number of public and private organizations around a nationwide, multi-faceted project launched in conjunction with the recent PBS series, This Emotional Life.
The 2-year campaign aims to bring help and hope to those trying to improve their lives. The campaign includes SAMHSA, the National Alliance on Mental Illness, the Mayo Clinic, Blue Star Families, and other organizations.
"This is a unique opportunity to leverage the power of media to effect societal change — in this case, in the area of mental health and emotional well-being,&rquot; said A. Kathryn Power, M.Ed., Director of SAMHSA’s Center for Mental Health Services. "SAMHSA is working closely with the This Emotional Life team to make sure that the information, stories, and resources that make up this unprecedented project get to the people who need them most."
What do an uncontrollably angry teen and a misunderstood lottery winner have in common? Or how about a young husband misunderstood by his wife and an elderly woman on her way to a senior center? They were all interviewed for the PBS series This Emotional Life, which premiered in early January 2010.
This Emotional Life is a multi-platform endeavor that explores the science behind the human quest for emotional well-being, the barriers that stand in the way of this pursuit, and the importance of social relationships in surmounting life’s challenges and finding happiness.
"The TV series is the cornerstone of a broader project to help people form better, deeper, and more profound human connections," said Richard Hutton, Senior Executive Producer of Vulcan Productions.
This Emotional Life is complemented by a Web site, which provides vetted resources to build social support networks around topics highlighted in the series, such as the importance of early attachment, how to heal strained or damaged relationships, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), stress, depression, grief, resilience and our pursuit of happiness.
Vulcan Productions is developing two toolkits, one that addresses early attachment for parents of infants and a second that addresses the emotional challenges faced by military service members and their families during the deployment cycle.
SAMHSA is distributing and assembling the "Early Moments Matter" toolkit designed to educate parents and caregivers of infants about what attachment is and why it's important.
The toolkit also provides parents concrete advice on ways to build attachment, a key to healthy social and emotional development. It will be distributed in high-birthrate hospitals, pediatric doctors' offices, and community-based clinics, as well as through partners who serve expecting and new parents.
"The Family Guide to Military Deployment," will provide tangible resources and tools to the families and friends of some of the 1.8 million servicemen and women who have been deployed, helping them face the emotional challenges typical of pre-deployment, deployment, and post-deployment.
For details about the documentary and campaign, visit the PBS Web site.