Language Guide for Reporting on Mental Health

If you’re a journalist on deadline, we recommend you check out our free guide.

Meet the 2019-2020 Fellows

Omar Al Owais

Omar Al Owais is a columnist at Sail Magazine in the United Arab Emirates and author of Salvaged, a poetry…

Oscar Parra

Oscar Parra is a journalist and systems engineer with 15 years of experience working on various websites…

Deena Kamel

Deena Kamel has been a business reporter at The National newspaper in Abu Dhabi since 2018, with…

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the purpose of the fellowship?

The goals of the fellowship are to:

  • Increase effective and accurate reporting on behavioral health issues
  • Equip journalists with the tools needed to produce high-quality work that reflects an understanding of behavioral health
  • Develop a diverse cohort of better-informed journalists who can more effectively report on behavioral health across evolving and emerging platforms

How are fellows announced or notified?

Fellows are notified individually by program staff by telephone before The Carter Center makes an official announcement on the center website and via press release. These calls are confidential. Due to the high volume of applications, applicants not selected as Fellows will not be contacted. Click here for the announcement date. 

Where can I find samples of previous fellowship projects?

To see a database of projects completed by Rosalynn Carter Fellows during their fellowship year, visit the Rosalynn Carter Fellows’ project database to search by Fellow name or year.

Where can I find out about the fellowships in New Zealand, Romania or South Africa?

New Zealand
In 2006, the New Zealand Mental Health Media Grants program was established to sustain the work of the Rosalynn Carter Fellowships in New Zealand without The Carter Center. The Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand and the national anti-discrimination campaign, "Like Minds, Like Mine," are co-creators and supporters of the program.

The grants are awarded each year to creative and journalistic projects in New Zealand that challenge people’s perceptions of the experience of mental distress and the journey to recovery.

New Zealander applicants should visit mediagrants.org.nz to apply, pre-register for next year’s Grants round or find out more about past winning Creative and Journalism projects.

For more information about the South African Fellowships Program, please contact:

Danielle Whitburn
Grants Coordinator
Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand
danielle.whitburn@mentalhealth.org.nz

Romania
In 2013-2014, The Carter Center and the Center for Independent Journalism in Bucharest awarded the final two fellows in the collaborative program.

For more information about future opportunities in Romania, please contact:

Cristina Lupu
Executive Director
Center for Independent Journalism
Bdul. Regina Elisabeta, no.32
Bucharest, Romania
www.cji.ro
www.facebook.com/Centrul.Jurnalism.Independent

South Africa
In 2011, the South African Fellowship Program was created to sustain the work of the Rosalynn Carter Fellowships in South Africa without The Carter Center. The South African fellowships are now administered through the South African Depression and Anxiety Group.

For more information about the South African Fellowships Program, please contact:

Marion Scher
Media Mentors/Freelance Journalist
2005-2006 Rosalynn Carter Fellow
Johannesburg, South Africa
Tel:  +27 82 467 6046
Email: journo@icon.co.za 

Recently

Rosalynn Carter Seated

Her Secret Service code name and other lesser known facts about First Lady Rosalynn Carter

By Susan Hunsinger and Katie Connor Carter Center Mental Health Program Former U.S. First Lady Rosalynn Carter has been in the public eye since her husband Jimmy ran for Georgia governor 50 years ago. She is best known for her advocacy for mental health issues, caregiver issues, as co-founder of The…

Janelle Harris Dixon

There’s shame and silence around self-injury in the Black community. Janelle Harris Dixon hopes to change that. 

Janelle Harris Dixon is a journalist, writer, editor, founder of The Write or Die Chick and a 2020-2021 Rosalynn Carter Fellow for Mental Health Journalism. This is a lightly edited version of the informal essay Janelle submitted for her fellowship application, republished with her permission as a guide for future…

Pharmacists in Liberia receive training on mental health and anti-stigma. (Photo/Wilfred Gwaikolo/Carter Center)

Carter Center’s Mental Health Program completes anti-stigma training for pharmacists in Liberia

A version of this article was originally published on The Bush Chicken, a media outlet dedicated to in-depth news and analysis on Liberia’s current events, development, and state of affairs.   By Zeze Ballah Journalist, Mental Health Reporters’ Network, Liberia The Carter Center’s Mental Health Program wrapped up final mental…

MHJFellows-71

Rosalynn Carter Fellowships for Mental Health Journalism open 2021-2022 applications for Latin American journalists

The Carter Center in Atlanta and Universidad de La Sabana, in association with Fundación Gabriel García Márquez, has opened applications for the 2021-2022 Rosalynn Carter Fellowships for Mental Health Journalism in Latin America. The partnership provides two fellowships for Latin American journalists to investigate and report on the state of…

Bakari Savage

Fellow Bakari Savage on reporting on mental health during a global pandemic

Bakari Savage, former correspondent for the top-rated morning show in Birmingham, Alabama, at WBRC Fox 6 News, “On Your Side”, and a 2020-2021 Rosalynn Carter Fellow for Mental Health Journalism, shares his fellowship experience and what he’s learned along the way. The deadline to apply for the 2021-2022’s fellowships application…

Twitter

Join #CarterFellowsChat to learn more about our mental health journalism fellowships

Carter Fellows and a longtime adviser will take live questions about the fellowships, applications and more. ATLANTA — The Carter Center’s Rosalynn Carter Fellowships for Mental Health Journalism will host a #CarterFellowsChat on Twitter on March 10, 2021 at 7 p.m. ET. The chat will feature fellows Eileen Truax, a…

Claim denied

‘Mental health is an issue now for everybody’: Carter Center interns reflect on Mental Health Task Force

Carter Center interns Jimmy Enobabor and Charlie Wood share their experience interning with the Mental Health Program and participating in the center’s Mental Health Task Force convening. By Jimmy Enobabor and Charlie Wood Carter Center Mental Health Program Interns The past year has been stressful as a college-aged student, from balancing virtual learning to managing the stressors of…

Abigail Jones

A 3-digit U.S. emergency mental health line is coming. But it’s not that simple.

Abigail Jones is an award-winning journalist specializing in mental health, trauma, women and family, and a 2020-2021 Rosalynn Carter Fellow for Mental Health Journalism. This is a lightly edited version of the informal essay Abigail submitted for her fellowship application, republished with her permission. The deadline for 2021-2022’s fellowship applications is…

Former First Lady Rosalynn Carter talks to fellows at the Carter Center in Atlanta, Georgia.

The Carter Center opens applications for 2021-22 Rosalynn Carter Fellowships for Mental Health Journalism

ATLANTA (Feb. 3, 2021) — The Carter Center is pleased to announce that applications for journalists who are U.S. citizens and residents are now being accepted for the Rosalynn Carter Fellowships for Mental Health Journalism. Selected fellows will join a top-notch cohort of more than 220 fellows awarded over the…

Liberia CIT training

A community approach to preventing police violence against Liberians in mental health crises 

By Tsion Horra Program Assistant, The Carter Center Mental Health Program The response to anti-Black violence in the United States and mass deaths from the Covid-19 pandemic globally have demonstrated how profoundly social and public emergencies affect the mental health of various populations.   And trauma in the aftermath of violent interactions with police are carried by those who survive, witness and fear these acts of brutality.   In 2020, we saw protests…

Kristyn headshot

Kristyn Wellesley to lead The Carter Center’s newsroom collaborative on access to mental health services

Kristyn Wellesley, a newsroom leader with deep experience in fact-checking, audience development and collaboration, will run The Carter Center Mental Health Program’s solutions-based, 5-newsroom U.S. collaborative on national access to mental health services and how lack of access is impacting local communities. Atlanta, GA (February 1, 2021) — The Carter…

Woman voting

Carter Center’s Mental Health and Democracy Programs join Hearken to support US journalists during election

By Susan Hunsinger Mental Health Program Associate The run up to the 2020 election in the United States — and its aftermath — has affected everyone, especially journalists tasked with covering the dizzying pace of unfolding events. The U.S. faced serious threats, like mistrust in the election process, disinformation and…

Liberian mother

‘Thinking Healthy’ to improve maternal mental health in Liberia

By Samhita Kumar and Sadie Bazur-Leidy The Carter Center’s Global Mental Health Program As a healthcare worker in Liberia, Caroline Saye knows all too well the challenges of providing mental health care, particularly to mothers and moms-to-be, because of too few practitioners. It’s why Saye says it’s so important to…

book-1091627_1280

Carter Fellow Marion Scher’s new book tells stories of lived experience and hope

By Susan Hunsinger Program Associate, Carter Center Mental Health Program A new mother shares her struggle with postpartum depression. A transgender person retraces a difficult journey. A young man whose suicide attempt left him a paraplegic and whose life in recovery is full and fulfilling. These are the stories that…

Former First Lady Rosalynn Carter talks to fellows at the Carter Center in Atlanta, Georgia.

The First Lady of Mental Health: A 50-year journey

By Lei Ellingson Senior Associate Director, Public Policy With 200 buildings and spanning 2,000 acres, Central State Hospital in Georgia was one of the largest-ever mental hospitals in the world. Now, its old prison, doctors’ houses and even a pecan grove sit abandoned, surrounded by 25,000 unmarked graves. But in the…

On July 10, 2007, Rosalynn Carter testified before a U.S. House of Representatives subcommittee in favor of the Wellstone Domenici Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act, calling for mental illnesses to be covered by insurance on par with physical illnesses. (Photo/The Carter Center)

Covid-19 is affecting everyone, but all insurance companies aren’t covering mental health services. Here’s what you can do.

By Helen Robinson Associate Director of Public Policy, The Carter Center As more and more consumer complaints pour into Kennedy Forum’s Parity Registry, experts are seeing firsthand how mental health insurance coverage — of lack thereof — is a matter of life or death as coverage denials force people across…

Graphic via Gabo Foundation

Top Latin American journalists awarded 2020-2021 Rosalynn Carter Fellowships for Mental Health Journalism

Clarissa Levy and Manoela dos Santos Bonaldo from Brazil, and Ronny Suárez and Carlos Francisco Fernández from Colombia have been selected as the 2020-2021 Rosalynn Carter Fellows for Mental Health Journalism in Latin America. The Carter Center and Universidad de La Sabana in Bogotá, Colombia, in association with the Gabo…

Knight-Wallace Reporting Fellows for the 2020-2021 academic year. (Photo/University of Michigan)

Rosalynn Carter Fellowship Alum Lisa Armstrong named Knight-Wallace Reporting Fellow

By Elisa Xiu Carter Center Communications Intern When the University of Michigan announced the Knight-Wallace Reporting Fellows for 2020-2021, Lisa Armstrong, associate professor at the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism and a 2015 recipient of the Rosalynn Carter Fellowship for Mental Health Journalism, was among its distinguished ranks. The…

Deena Kamel, left, and Raya Al Jadir, right, are recipients of the Rosalynn Carter Fellowships for Mental Health Journalism in the UAE.

The National announces UAE’s 2020-2021 Rosalynn Carter Fellows for Mental Health Journalism

ATLANTA — As part of a partnership with The National media outlet in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), The Carter Center announces two new fellows for the Rosalynn Carter Fellowships for Mental Health Journalism Program in the UAE. Fellow recipients Deena Kamel and Raya Al Jadir will join an international…

2020-2021 Carter Fellows

The Carter Center Awards Eight U.S. journalists Rosalynn Carter Fellowships for Mental Health Journalism

The Carter Center will train fellows on effective mental health reporting and support them as they report on a mental health topic of their choice.     ATLANTA — The Carter Center, a global leader in mental health, is pleased to announce the eight U.S. recipients of the 2020-2021 Rosalynn…

Press Releases

Kristyn Wellesley to lead The Carter Center’s newsroom collaborative on access to mental health services

Kristyn Wellesley, a newsroom leader with deep experience in fact-checking, audience development and collaboration, will run The Carter Center Mental Health Program’s solutions-based, 5-newsroom U.S. collaborative on national access to mental health services and how lack of access is impacting local communities. Atlanta, GA (February 1, 2021) — The Carter…

Carter Center Hosts Discussion on Coping with Anxiety

May 16, 2017 Anxiety Disorders Affect about 18 Percent of U.S. Adults The Carter Center is hosting a June 15 discussion on anxiety disorders with Rosalynn Carter Mental Health Journalism Fellow Andrea Petersen and Carter Center Mental Health Program staffer Rebecca Palpant Shimkets. Petersen, a Wall Street Journal health and…

Applications Being Accepted for 2017-18 Rosalynn Carter Fellowships for Mental Health Journalism

Applications from U.S. residents are now being accepted for eight one-year journalism fellowships with the Carter Center’s Mental Health Program. These fellowships aim to enhance public understanding of mental health issues and reduce stigma and discrimination against people with mental illnesses through balanced and accurate reporting.

Applications

Applications open for Latin American 2020-2021 Rosalynn Carter Fellowships for Mental Health Journalism

The Carter Center and the University of La Sabana, in association with the Gabo Foundation, are now accepting 2020-2021 applications for the Rosalynn Carter Fellowships for Mental Health Journalism in Latin America. Bogotá, Colombia — Applications are now open for two fellowships for Latin American journalists who investigate and produce…

Applications open for UAE’s 2020-21 Rosalynn Carter Fellowships for Mental Health Journalism

The fellowship program aims to develop a diverse cohort of journalists who effectively report on behavioral health. Applications will be accepted until the end of April. DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — The Rosalynn Carter Fellowships for Mental Health Journalism UAE program is accepting applications for its 2020-21 intake of two…

Join #CarterFellowsChat to learn more about our mental health journalism fellowships

Carter Fellows and a longtime adviser will take live questions about the fellowships, applications and more.  UPDATED March 5, 2020: We missed you at #CarterFellowsChat! Tap on the tweet below and then on each question to see tips for applying from fellows Aneri Pattani and Christine Herman, and longtime Journalism…

Topics

Resources For Journalists

Supporting Journalists Efforts In Mental Health Journalism

The Carter Center Journalism Resource Guide on Behavioral Health (pdf) supports journalists’ efforts to report accurately and effectively behavioral health issues, including addiction and substance use, in ways that do not reinforce stereotypes and stigma.

  • Online Journalism Resources

    Find training opportunities, key mental health organizations & centers, governmental resources, important publications, and more.

    More Info
  • Tipsheet for Covering Childhood Traumatic Grief

    From the National Child Traumatic Stress Network

    More Info