Baton Rouge – Louisiana Spirit, a program through the Department of Health – Office of Mental Health, was recently honored for its 2006 advertising campaign with eight awards at the 2007 New Orleans Addy Awards.  The Addy Awards is the world’s largest advertising competition, with over 60,000 entries annually.  The entries submitted by Louisiana Spirit included pictures of hurricane survivors and a message that mental health counseling is available.

Louisiana Spirit received seven “Gold” awards, the highest honor offered, in the following categories:

• Newspaper print (four awards for entries in this category)
• Single Medium Campaign (one award)
• Mixed/Mulitple Medium Campaign (one award)
• PSA Outdoor (one award)

Louisiana Spirit also received one “Silver” award in the Broadcast Electronic Medium category for the radio commercial “You’re Not Crazy.”

Louisiana Spirit partnered with Zehnder Communications, a strategic and creative advertising agency with offices in New Orleans and Baton Rouge, for this campaign.  The advertisements, which feature photos of hurricane survivors with messages including “You’re Not Crazy” and “Healing is a State of Mind,” illustrate the normalcy of feeling overwhelmed by storm-related stressors and the importance of talking about it.

“We are excited by the recognition of this public service campaign and our partnership with Zenhnder Communications and our LDH colleagues,” said John G. Daniel, Chief Quality Assurance Officer for Louisiana Spirit.  “These messages hopefully inform people in Louisiana that we are all vulnerable to feeling ‘stressed out’ and that help is available.”

Louisiana Spirit’s winning entries will now move to the regional competition for consideration.

Louisiana Spirit is a free counseling service that was formed in response to the sudden increase of Louisiana residents facing post-hurricane stress issues.  The federally funded program aids hurricane victims in overcoming the emotional and mental anguish experienced by disaster survivors.  Newsweek magazine called Louisiana Spirit one of two programs that are “definitely helping citizens make a difference in the recovery efforts.”

For more information about Louisiana Spirit, contact Pierre Washington at (225) 219-5031 or (225) 803-4592, or visit its Web site,