Summit Entertainment, Participant Media create depression awareness campaign

Inspired by Participant Media and Summit Entertainment's THE BEAVER, Participant has created a Social public Action Campaign to increase awareness about depression, teaming with three leading non-profit organizations known for effectively providing hope and help to those affected by depression and other forms of mental illness: the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), To Write Love on Her Arms (TWLOHA) and the Kristin Brooks Hope Center (KBHC). The film, which opens in limited release in North America on Friday, May 6, 2011, stars Academy Award® winners Mel Gibson and Jodie Foster with the film also directed by Foster.

Working with these organizations, Participant designed its Social Action Campaign to provide audiences with tools and resources for individuals, their families and the broader public to address the issue of mental illness and opportunities for engagement in community-based conversations and online discussions.

John Schreiber, Participant's Executive Vice President of Social Action and Advocacy explains "The Beaver explores the effects of mental illness on individuals, their families, friends and co-workers with sensitivity and compassion, so for our Social Action Campaign we joined forces with these major organizations to create awareness of the severity, urgency and prevalence of these disorders in today's world and offer support and a sense of community. Our aim is to help to de-stigmatize mental illness and expand the reach of these significant groups to new audiences."

The National Institute of Mental Health reports that one in four adults - approximately 57.7 million Americans - experiences a mental health disorder in a given year, with 1 in 17 Americans living with a serious mental illness (i.e. major depression, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), panic disorder, post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and borderline personality disorder).

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