Mental health is not just a 'white people thing' in Ad Council's new PSA

Latest 'Seize the Awkward' film from Droga5 highlights Black and Hispanic people aged 16 to 24

Published On
Oct 27, 2022

Editor's Pick

The latest film in the Ad Council's “Seize the Awkward” campaign focuses on Black and Hispanic people aged 16 to 24 in a bid to get them to open up about their mental health.

Created by the Ad Council in partnership with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention and The Jed Foundation, the new PSA , titled “We Can Talk About It”, shows the responses young people of color can get to their mental health struggles, including comments calling mental illness “a white people thing” and people telling them to “just think happier thoughts.”

The ad, created by Droga5, will appear nationally on broadcast, digital, social, out-of-home and print platforms.

“Black and Hispanic/Latine youth face additional challenges in accessing the care they deserve,” said Chief Executive Officer of Jed, John MacPhee. “As mental health leaders for our country’s youth, we are responsible for providing resources that address the unique challenges that all young people face while advocating for increased equity in mental health.”

The broader campaign, first created in 2018, aims to lower suicide rates in young adults.

Previous “Seize the Awkward” efforts have included working with video game company NCSOFT in 2020 that used the game Guild Wars 2 to ask people to check in on their friends. The campaign also released an ad involving a person in a brown turtleneck who personified the awkward moments in which people could ask others about mental health.


Oct 27, 2022
Client :
Ad Council
Agency :
Co-Chief Creative Officer :
Scott Bell
Executive Creative Director :
Kevin Brady
Executive Design Director :
Nate Scott
Creative Director :
Pepe Funegra
Senior Art Director :
Joseph Russomano
Senior Copywriter :
Temnete Sebhatu
Project Manager :
Camila Soliz
Chief Creation Officer :
Sally-Ann Dale
Co-Head of Film and Content Production :
Ruben Mercadal
Co-Head of Film and Content Production :
Jesse Brihn
Executive Producer :
Jeremy Fox
Senior Producer Film :
Charlotte Stirrup
Senior Producer Film :
Patrick Wood
Senior Music Supervisor :
Mike Ladman
Junior Music Supervisor :
Mara Techam
Associate Director & Sr. Business Affairs :
Thomas Vendittelli
Senior Talent Manager :
Sunny Valencia
Junior Designer :
Shannon Choi
Strategy Director :
Graham Jones
Sr Communications Strategist :
Molly Klein
Junior Communications Strategist :
Sam Williams
Intercultural Context Director :
Justin Clagette
Group Account Director :
Danielle DiMarino
Account Supervisor :
Michaela DeRosa
Account Manager :
Caroline Osborn
Chief Campaign Development Officer :
Heidi Arthur
SVP Group Campaign Director :
Deborah Leiter
Campaign Director :
Tania Sanjurjo
VP Strategy & Evaluation :
Catherine Chao
Director Media Strategy & Agency Relations :
Greg Kelly
Director of Campaign Analytics :
Catherine Yarovoi
Assistant Campaign Manager :
Meghan Moloney
Communications :
Nina Trach
Consulting Marketing and Campaigns Lead :
Dawn Thomsen
Director of Campaigns :
Will Hilbert
Chief Communications Officer :
Stephanie Rogers
Director Marketing and Communications :
Maria de Los Angeles Corral
VP Mission Engagement :
Doreen Marshall
Senior Social Media Manager :
Vera Lukacs
Production Company :
Object & Animal
Director :
Haya Waseem
Director of Photography :
Christopher Lew
Executive Producer :
Justin Benoliel
Producer :
Jennifer Brooks
Edit House :
Cabin Edit
Editor :
Dylan Edwards
Assistant Editor :
Dominique Machain
Managing Partner :
Maggie Meade
Executive Producer :
Adam Becht
Senior Producer :
Marianna Terenzio
Post Production VFX :
The Mill
Executive Producer :
TJ Sponzo
Producer :
Katharine Mulderry
Designer :
Brian O'Donnell
Designer :
Jesse Newman
2D Lead :
Asaf Yeger
2D Assist :
Jose Aruaz
Finish :
Matt McDonald
Finish :
David Forcada
Finish :
Kayako Ono
Post Production Color :
Electric Theatre Collective
Colorist :
Luke Morrison
Color Producer :
Olivia Jessop
Original Music :
Found Objects
ECD & Co-founder :
Jay Wadley
ECD & Co-founder :
Trevor Gureckis
Creative Director :
Ben Marshall
Composer :
Adam Weiss
Executive Producer :
Jennie Armon
Head of Creative Production :
Elijah Torn
Lead Producer :
Katt Matt
Producer :
Nick Chomowicz
Producer :
Agatha Lee
Music Coordinator :
Lee Cash Chisholm
Sound House :
Sound Design and Mix :
Aaron Reynolds
Sound Design and Mix :
Isaac Matus
Executive Producer :
Vicky Ferraro
Production :
Droga5 Studios
Design Director :
Pravin Chottera
Editor/Animator :
Victor Hermosillo
Post Producer :
Sheldon Smith

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