Series 3:
Youth Mental Health

In partnership with Chaplaincy Innovation Lab, The Blue Dove Foundation, Well Being Trust & Soul Shop

Overview   |   Episodes   |   Resources   |   Faith Leaders & Partners   |   Purchase

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Series Launch Oct 27, 2021

Encouraging and Preparing Faith Leaders to Respond

As 1 in 4 women and 1 in 7 men experience domestic or intimate partner violence, statistics suggest this crisis affects EVERY congregation and faith community.

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Encouraging and Preparing Faith Leaders to Respond

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This third series from the Telly Award-winning Healing the Healers project focuses on the urgent need for faith leaders to address the dramatic rise in anxiety, depression and suicide/suicide ideation for youth over the past year of compounding pandemic isolation and racial justice movements. The film series focuses on breaking the silence and stigma surrounding youth mental health and addresses issues specific to COVID/pandemic, isolation, suicide, trauma, social justice and racial justice movements, and the support needs particular to BIPOC and LGBTQ+ communities. Also addressed is the growing loss of confidence in institutionalized religion, as well as the ways youth are leaning into rituals of faith for comfort and healing. Ultimately, the series explores how spiritual care can help (and not harm) youth who are experiencing lonliness, anxiety, depression and/or suicide ideation.

Throughout the episodes, faith leader experts engage in peer-to-peer conversations about their personal experiences and innovative work in supporting youth, including learned wisdom and solutions engaging technology, brain development science, and the increased connectivity and sense of purpose that spiritual and faith communities can provide.

This third series from the Telly Award-winning Healing the Healers project focuses on the urgent need for faith leaders to address the dramatic rise in anxiety, depression and suicide/suicide ideation for youth over the past year of compounding pandemic isolation and racial justice movements. The film series focuses on breaking the silence and stigma surrounding youth mental health and addresses issues specific to COVID/pandemic, isolation, suicide, trauma, social justice and racial justice movements, and the support needs particular to BIPOC and LGBTQ+ communities. Also addressed is the growing loss of confidence in institutionalized religion, as well as the ways youth are leaning into rituals of faith for comfort and healing.

Ultimately, the series explores how spiritual care can help (and not harm) youth who are experiencing lonliness, anxiety, depression and/or suicide ideation.

Throughout the episodes, faith leader experts engage in peer-to-peer conversations about their personal experiences and innovative work in supporting youth, including learned wisdom and solutions engaging technology, brain development science, and the increased connectivity and sense of purpose that spiritual and faith communities can provide.

The three-part video series and accompanying written resources provide tools for faith leaders, chaplains, youth ministry teams and parents.

This video series addresses questions like:

  • How do I lead/respond to rising mental health needs of youth?
  • What does providing spiritual care and mental health/wellness support look like?
  • What support do campus and hospital chaplains need to respond to increased suicide attempts?
  • How can faith communities better help youth facing loneliness, anxiety, depression and/or suicide ideation find ways forward?
  • How can congregations support parents of youth who are facing mental health challenges?

Series Launch Oct 27, 2021

Series Host

Project Consultant

Series Episodes

Episodes do not have to be watched in order, you may self select the order that best suits your needs.

Episode 1

What's In Your Toolbox? Cultivating Mental Health Resilience in Youth and Faith Communities

Tandra M. Rutledge M.A., Student Ministry Leader, Educator and Director of Healthcare Systems Initiatives at the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention and Daniel Warshawsky, former Youth Engagement Director of United Synagogue Youth, and now Psy.D Student at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology

Watch Episode Clip

WHAT’S IN YOUR TOOLBOX? CULTIVATING MENTAL HEALTH RESILIENCE IN YOUTH AND FAITH COMMUNITIES
(30 minutes)

Episode Description: Tandra M. Rutledge, a parent, Student Ministry Leader, Suicide Prevention educator and Daniel Warshawsky, a former Engagement Director of United Synagogue Youth, discuss the current youth mental health crisis. They highlight their work as suicide prevention advocates and provide tools for faith leaders, youth ministry teams and parents for supporting and connecting more deeply with youth.

Themes: Asking Deep Questions and Building Authentic Relationships, The Impact of Racism and LGBTQ Discrimination on Youth Mental Health, Intentional Community, Intentional Diversity, Suicide Prevention: What is Your Faith Community’s Action Plan?, Expanding Your Mental Health Toolbox.

Written Reflection: Reflecting on Body and Space
By Rev. Dr. Lakisha R. Lockhart
Assistant Professor of Christian Education, Union Presteberian Seminary

Episode 2

When We Feel, We Heal: Trauma-informed Support for Youth

Chaplain Tahera Ahmad, Director of Interfaith Engagement and Associate Chaplain at Northwestern University and Pardeep S. Kaleka, former Police Officer and Educator, and now Executive Director of Interfaith Conference of Greater Milwaukee

Watch Episode Clip

WHEN WE FEEL, WE HEAL: TRAUMA-INFORMED SUPPORT FOR YOUTH
(27 minutes)

Episode Description: Chaplain Tahera Ahmad, Director of Interfaith Engagement at Northwestern University and Pardeep S. Kaleka, former Police Officer and Educator, and now Executive Director of Interfaith Conference of Greater Milwaukee discuss the trauma and fatigue youth are experiencing during the recent wave of racial and social justice activism and how faith leaders and faith communities can provide hope and opportunity for healing through spiritual care.

Themes: Walking Through Trauma With Youth, Communal Trauma and Effects on Youth, Destigmatizing Mental Health Care and Increasing Accessibility For Youth, In the Face of Discrimination: Resilience, Strength and Courage in Youth, Social Justice: Understanding the Layers of Trauma, Opportunities for Belonging During Crisis.

Written Reflection: Religion and Resilience in Youth Today
By Farha Abbasi, M.D.
Assistant Professor, Department of Psychiatry, Michigan State University

Episode 3

Understanding the Developing Adolescent Brain: Whole Person Care in Faith Communities

Rev. Talitha Arnold, Minister of United Church of Santa Fe, NM and Co-Founder, National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention Faith Communities Task Force and Jarrod Hegwood, former Youth Pastor and now Clinical Director of Counseling

Watch Episode Clip

UNDERSTANDING THE DEVELOPING ADOLESCENT BRAIN: WHOLE PERSON CARE IN FAITH COMMUNITIES
(30 minutes)

Episode Description Rev. Talitha Arnold of United Church of Santa Fe and Co-Founder, National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention Faith Communities Task Force and Jarrod Hegwood, former Youth Pastor and now a Clinical Director of Counseling, share practical ways congregations can respond to the current youth mental health crisis and how learning about brain development can empower youth.

Themes: An Urgent Call to Address Mental Health Needs in a Tumultuous Time, The Faith Community as Protective Factor: Promoting Mental Health, What’s Faith Got to do With it?, Knowledge is Power: Embracing the Developing Brain, Building Authentic Relationships with Youth, Value and Self Worth in a Performance Economy, Recognizing Layers of Trauma: Advocating for Youth Mental Health Needs, Beyond the Stigma and Shame: Reframing the Conversation.

Written Reflection: Integrating Mental Health into All Levels of Your Faith Community
By Rev. Dr. Scott Weimer

Full Expert Resource & Reflection Guide

Available with Series Purchase

ADDITIONAL WRITTEN REFLECTIONS FOR THIS SERIES INCLUDE:

Healing Spiritual Violence Through Love: A Conversation on Sexual and Gender Diversity
Angel Celeste Collie,
Assistant Director,
Duke Center for Sexual and Gender Diversity

The Blue Dove Foundation Reflection: The Faith Community and Adolescent Psychiatric Hospitalization
Lisa B. Ziv,
CEO of the The Blue Dove Foundation and Rabbi Shmuel Silber
Yael Ziv,
High School Senior or “beat depression”

Chaplain Reflection: Guide for Spiritual Care Practitioners
Michael Skaggs, Ph.D.,
Director of Programs, Chaplaincy Innovation Lab

Rev. Tawana Davis Reflection

PDF Download

Rev. Amy Gopp Reflection

PDF Download

Power and Control Wheel

PDF Download

Spiritual Community Declaration

PDF Download

10 Things the Faith Community Can Do

PDF Download

Full Expert Resource Guide Available with Series Purchase

“We faith leaders must face these mental health concerns directly and honestly in order to help stop deaths by suicide, to provide appropriate pastoral care to those who experience a mental health crisis, and to support families who need encouragement, a listening ear, and clear direction to find best practices in mental health services in the church and community.”
– Rev. Dr. Scott Weimer,
Pastor Emeritus, North Avenue Presbyterian Church, Atlanta, Georgia and Executive Director, JLW Foundation

“The Chaplaincy Innovation Lab is grateful for this timely, accessible, and thought-provoking entry in the Healing the Healers series. By capturing compelling encounters among professionals, Odyssey Impact helps do the vital work of bridging the gap between spirituality and mental health, illustrating well why these two components integral to human flourishing must be considered jointly. With the enormous social interruptions created by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, attention to the mental health of our communities’ youth is needed now more than ever.”
– Michael Skaggs, Ph.D.
Director of Programs, Chaplaincy Innovation Lab

Featured Faith Leaders

Project Consultants

Written Reflections

Series 3: Youth Mental Health

Special Thanks to Our Partners

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Production Credits

Director and Sr. Producer
Kirsten Kelly

Executive Producers
Carolanne Dolan
Nick Stuart

Producer
Nancy Dionne

Director of Photography/Editor
Jennifer Cox

Line Producer
Michelle Budnick

Sound Operator
Shuling Yong

Second Camera
Margaret Byrne

Location Manager & Covid Compliance Officer
Bea Bosco

Media Management
Darnell Laval

Interns
Ronak Gandhi

For a list of Odyssey Impact staff please visit odyssey-impact.org

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