Applications Now Open for First-Ever Youth Mental Health Forum at The White House

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5 min. read

More than 18 months into COVID-19 and amidst a mental health crisis, MTV Entertainment Group, along with 18 leading mental health non-profits, recently announced the first convening to empower young people to drive culture from awareness to action on mental health through storytelling and media. Senior officials from the Biden-Harris Administration, including from the Department of Health and Human Services, are expected to speak during the Forum in early 2022, which will culminate with a White House event that will include talent, expert panels, and participant presentations.

Applications are now open here through December 15, 2021 for young people to apply to be part of a 4-6 week program led by mental health nonprofit mentors, which will culminate in a two-day forum in Washington, D.C. As part of the program, participants will work in small groups to develop ideas for ways we can use storytelling & media to:

  1.     Inspire young people to take actions to improve their everyday mental health;
  2.     Encourage young people to support their peers and check in on each other; or
  3.     Help make young people more aware of the crisis services available to them.

The groups will share their best ideas and creative campaign concepts at a White House event that includes a diverse audience of media and technology professionals, government officials, and non-profit executives. Their ideas will then act as the basis for future creative public health campaigns related to mental health.


Non-profit partners include:

  •     The AAKOMA Project
  •     Active Minds
  •     Asian Mental Health Collective
  •     Boris Lawrence Henson Foundation
  •     Born This Way Foundation
  •     Bring Change to Mind
  •     The Jed Foundation
  •     Mental Wealth Alliance
  •     NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness)
  •     National Queer and Trans Therapists of Color Network
  •     Poderistas
  •     Rare Impact Fund by Rare Beauty
  •     Student Veterans of America
  •     Trans Lifeline
  •     The Trevor Project
  •     The Upswing Fund for Adolescent Mental Health
  •     Vibrant Emotional Health
  •     We R Native


MTV Entertainment is honored to work alongside the Biden-Harris administration and this impressive coalition of leading mental health nonprofits to engage young people in the development of creative campaigns that reach the most at-risk communities with tangible ways to take mental health actions.

Please apply now through December 15th to be considered for this exciting opportunity. All travel expenses to Washington, D.C. will be covered, with the chance to be brought on to the MTV team temporarily following the forum to bring your ideas to life.

Apply Through Wednesday, 12/15!

Statements from Forum Leadership

“As the rise of mental health issues have created a second pandemic, especially among young people, MTV Entertainment convened a coalition of entertainment leaders and mental health experts to harness the power of storytelling with the goal of ending the stigma surrounding mental health. In coordination with the Biden-Harris administration and an impressive coalition of leading mental health nonprofits, we are going a step further and empowering young people to use storytelling to share their powerful voices and diverse experiences to help themselves and support others.”

  • Chris McCarthy, President and CEO, MTV Entertainment Group.

“The pandemic has taken a devastating toll on the mental health of young Americans, especially in communities where resources are thin. Though mental health gets discussed globally, we still have work to do to ensure everyone in America is heard and knows where to find help. This forum will help reach young people where they are, through the communication channels they already know.”

  • Secretary Xavier Becerra, Department of Health and Human Services

“America’s young people have faced an unprecedented amount of uncertainty and disruption during the last 18 months, and we need to ensure they have the support and help they need to move forward. We hope this forum will help bring their crucial voices to the nationwide mental health conversation.”

  • Miriam E. Delphin-Rittmon, Ph. D., the HHS Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Use and the leader of SAMHSA

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