Center City, Minn. (July 23, 2021) – Working on video production for the Olympics is a challenge all by itself. But add to that continued concerns about COVID and being separated from family members for weeks, and the challenges can be even greater.
The Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation and Sports Video Group (SVG) are hosting "Mental Health Minute," a new 10-part online video series to support those who are working on the Tokyo Olympics. Each episode focuses on a specific issue facing those who are away from home and are interested in learning how to maintain emotional well-being, stay connected with family back home, and much more.
"Working with Hazelden Betty Ford has made a difference for our organization," says Ken Kerschbaumer, SVG, co-executive director. "The expertise offered by Hazelden Betty Ford gives our members clear guidance that can truly change lives and even save them."
Hazelden Betty Ford's Dr. Leslie Adair kicked off the episodes by addressing how to feel connected when feeling homesick. Other episodes focus on how to avoid substance use while away from home and isolated as well as tips to help identify a co-worker who might be struggling. Three-time Olympic Gold medalist swimmer Carrie Bates, who works for Hazelden Betty Ford, also participates in the video series, along with Jerry Moe, executive director of Hazelden Betty Ford’s national Children’s Program.
"This is a great opportunity to use video to connect with people who are literally a half a world away from their families and friends," says Adair, national executive director of mental health for Hazelden Betty Ford. "We’ve heard about the mental health challenges some Olympic athletes face. They're not alone. Video producers also face stress on a daily basis, and this video series offers tips to navigate daily life amid a hectic schedule with deadlines."
Throughout the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, SVG is also hosting daily Win Back Your Life Twelve Step meetings. These meetings provide support and community to those in or seeking recovery for a substance use disorder. It’s an opportunity to begin or end each day just the right way, and anyone can join from anywhere via Zoom.
"From my past experience as a sports reporter, I know the excitement but also the stress that comes with covering big, deadline-driven events like the Olympics," says Lester Munson, chairman of the board at the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation. "These short videos can have such a positive impact on people dealing with mental health challenges and other issues. I'm really proud our organization can contribute to this partnership."
The Sports Video Group was formed in 2006 to support the professional community that relies on video, audio, and broadband technologies to produce and distribute sports content. Leagues, owners, teams, players, broadcasters, webcasters, and consumer technology providers have joined the SVG to learn from each other, turn vision into reality, implement new innovations, while sharing experiences that will lead to advancements in the sports production/distribution process and the overall consumer sports experience.
The Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is a force of healing and hope for individuals, families and communities affected by addiction to alcohol and other drugs. As the nation's leading nonprofit provider of comprehensive inpatient and outpatient addiction and mental health care for adults and youth, the Foundation has treatment centers and telehealth services nationwide as well as a network of collaborators throughout health care. Through charitable support and a commitment to innovation, the Foundation is able to continually enhance care, research, programs and services, and help more people. With a legacy that began in 1949 and includes the 1982 founding of the Betty Ford Center, the Foundation today is committed to diversity, equity and inclusion in its services and throughout the organization, which also encompasses a graduate school of addiction studies, a publishing division, an addiction research center, recovery advocacy and thought leadership, professional and medical education programs, school-based prevention resources and a specialized program for children who grow up in families with addiction.