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Project Relate Recognized With Two Awards

Project Relate, a statewide public service campaign aimed at breaking down the stigma and stereotypes associated with mental illness, has been recognized with two awards.

The National Association of Social Workers - Nebraska Chapter, recognized The Kim Foundation with the Public Citizen of the Year award during their annual conference, "Stand Up for Others" on April 1, 2005. The award acknowledged The Kim Foundation's work on behalf of Project Relate, as well as their dedication to supporting mental health programs, public education, and advocacy. The Kim Foundation was instrumental in bringing together organizations across the state of Nebraska to create and launch Project Relate, a campaign which is still ongoing. Craig Wolf accepted the award on behalf of Larry Courtnage, Founder and President of The Kim Foundation. Mr. Courtnage is also the CEO of C&A Industries, Inc.

The American Advertising Federation (AAF) will recognize the Omaha Federation of Advertising (OFA) with the Club Achievement Award during their national conference on June 5, 2005 in Nashville, TN. The AAF awarded OFA with First Place in the Public Service category for their work on Project Relate, the recipient of the organization's annual public service project. OFA developed the advertising and media for the campaign, donating over $250,000 in creative services to the project. Kim Stowe, past president of OFA will accept the award on behalf of the organization.

Project Relate was launched through the joint efforts of the Kim Foundation and a variety of healthcare, social service, and non-profit organizations across the state of Nebraska, including the Omaha Federation of Advertising. In addition to speaking out against stigma and providing information about mental illness to the community, Project Relate also aims to provide a clearinghouse of mental health resources across the state enabling those who suffer from mental illness and their loved ones to easily find the mental health services they need.

  Advertising Campaign To Spotlight Nebraska’s Battle Against Mental Illness

“ Project Relate” Public Service Announcements Launch April 7

(Omaha, Neb.) April 1, 2004 - Local organizations have teamed up to create a statewide advertising and public service campaign aimed at increasing awareness and improving public perception about mental health in Nebraska. The Project Relate campaign, which will launch April 7, 2004, strives to help the public relate to people with mental illness, demystify and personalize the issue, and breakdown the stereotypes associated with mental illness.

“Nebraska currently ranks 49th in the nation for resources allocated to treatment of the mentally ill,” said Colleen Wuebben, Executive Director of NAMI-Nebraska (National Alliance for Mental Illness). “In order for us to institute change in the system, we must raise public awareness and understanding. Mental illness affects everyday people including 91,000 Nebraskans. More than 23,000 of those are children under the age of 17.”

The Kim Foundation, which provides support to charitable organizations providing mental health services, partnered with Alegent Health, BryanLGH Medical Center, Catholic Charities of Omaha, Community Alliance, Lutheran Family Services of Nebraska, NAMI-Nebraska and Uta Halee – Cooper Village to create Project Relate.

"I applaud the many organizations behind Project Relate for joining forces to abolish a stigma that demoralizes some very courageous people," said Governor Mike Johanns. "With the dramatic advances in treatment, many people with mental illnesses are working, raising families, and contributing to their communities. I encourage every Nebraskan to guard against stereotypes that have no rightful place in our society."

The advertising campaign will feature eight 30-second TV and radio commercials, a series of print ads and billboards, as well as an educational website devoted to mental health information and resources, www.projectrelate.org. The Public Service Announcements were produced by the Omaha Federation of Advertising, which selected the Kim Foundation as the recipient of its annual non-profit organization public service project. All radio and print ads are available for download on www.projectrelate.org.


  Project Relate Kicks Off
April 7, 2004


From the Omaha World-Herald, April 6, 2004::

LINCOLN - A public service advertising campaign to challenge the stigma of mental illness kicks off Wednesday, with ads and events to be continued through the next several months.

Dubbed "Project Relate," the campaign stresses that "mental illness affects everyday people."

One sample ad shows a distinguished-looking man. The caption: "schizo deranged lunatic" and "grandfather gardener professor."

" With treatment, I've been able to lead a very full life," the ad text reads. "Perhaps you should rethink your definition of mental illness."

Advertising and marketing professionals with the Omaha Federation of Advertising donated their services to develop broadcast and print advertisements. Media outlets are donating air time and print space for the campaign.

Click here to search the Omaha World-Herald's archives for the complete story.