Give an Hour’s Campaign to Change Direction Partners with PRSSA

By August 23, 2016Announcements, Media, News

Give an Hour’s Campaign to Change Direction Partners with PRSSA

The Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) will challenge participants of the 2017 Bateman Case Study Competition to develop, launch and promote the Campaign to Change Direction, in partnership with Give an Hour™ (GAH), The Plank Center for Leadership in Public Relations (The Plank Center) and Edelman.

“The stigmas surrounding mental health create a serious issue for the advancement of the cause,” said PRSSA 2016–2017 National President Emma Finkbeiner. “By partnering Give an Hour with the Bateman Competition, I know our creative PRSSA members can help raise awareness about the importance of mental health through the Campaign to Change Direction.”

The Campaign to Change Direction is a coalition of concerned citizens, nonprofit leaders and leaders from the private sector who have come together to change the culture in America about mental health, mental illness and wellness. The goal of the Campaign is to change the way we think and talk about mental health. Participating teams will achieve this goal, in part, through education on the Five Signs of mental suffering.

This year’s client, Give an Hour, leads the Campaign to Change Direction effort. GAH’s mission is to harness the expertise and generosity of volunteer mental health professionals capable of responding to both acute and chronic conditions that arise within our society. The Competition is sponsored by The Plank Center and Edelman.

“We are so grateful and proud that the Campaign to Change Direction has been chosen by PRSSA as the focus for the 2017 Bateman Case Study Competition,” said founder and president of Give an Hour, Dr. Barbara Van Dahlen. “We know that the key to changing the culture of mental health in America is to reach students in colleges, universities and communities across the country with our message. The Bateman Competition gives us an amazing opportunity to do just that.”  Dr. Van Dahlen adds, “The message of Change Direction is simple and powerful — and perfectly suited for this inspiring Competition. By encouraging everyone to pay attention to their emotional well-being and by educating everyone about the Five Signs of emotional suffering, we will ensure that those in need receive the care and support they deserve.”

The Bateman Case Study Competition originated in 1973 as a National Case Study allowing PRSSA members to exercise the analytical skills required for public relations problem solving. In 1983, the name of the Competition was changed to honor the late J. Carroll Bateman, APR. Bateman was a past president of the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) and was instrumental in the founding of PRSSA.

For additional information and updates about the PRSSA Bateman Case Study Competition,

About the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA)
The Public Relations Student Society of America ( is the foremost organization for students interested in public relations and communications. Founded in 1968 by its parent organization, the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA), PRSSA includes more than 11,000 student members and advisers, and is active at more than 340 colleges and universities.

About Change Direction
The Campaign to Change Direction, a national initiative to change the culture of mental health in America, encourages Americans to care for their mental well-being just as they do their physical well-being. The Campaign is led by Give an Hour, a national nonprofit organization providing free mental health services to the military and veteran community. Change Direction addresses common barriers to understanding mental health and raises awareness about Five Signs that may indicate someone is suffering emotionally and needs help: change in personality, agitation, withdrawal, decline in personal care and hopelessness. Over 240 partner organizations are using their unique skills and opportunities to spread awareness. Organizations and individuals who are interested in learning more or making a pledge can visit

About Give an Hour
Give an Hour, a nonprofit 501(c)(3) providing free mental health services to military members, veterans and their families, was founded in September 2005 by Dr. Barbara Van Dahlen, a psychologist in the Washington, D.C., area. Give an Hour has been instrumental in the development of the community-based approach to addressing the challenges that face our nation’s military community, having created a successful model for harnessing skill-based volunteers eager to offer their services. Thus far, the network of nearly 7,000 licensed mental health professionals has provided more than 192,000 hours of care and support to those in need. To learn more, visit or

About The Plank Center for Leadership in Public Relations
The Plank Center is the leading international resource for practitioners, educators and students who are passionate about advancing their careers and the public relations profession. Its mission is to help develop and recognize outstanding diverse public relations leaders, role models and mentors to advance ethical public relations in an evolving, global society.

About Edelman
Edelman is a leading global communications marketing firm with more than 5,500 employees in 65 cities worldwide. Edelman partners with many of the world’s largest and emerging businesses and organizations, helping them evolve, promote and protect their brands and reputations.

Edelman was named one of Advertising Age’s “Agency to Watch” in 2014; one of Forbes’ “14 Most Influential Agencies of 2014”; and The Holmes Report’s “2013 Global Agency of the Year.” Edelman was awarded the Grand Prix Cannes Lion for PR in 2014 and was among Glassdoor’s “Best Places to Work” for the third time in 2014. Edelman owns specialty firms Edelman Berland (research) and United Entertainment Group (entertainment, sports, experiential), a joint venture with United Talent Agency.

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