Our Story

Single Heavy Weight Line

Creating Digital Diaries: Rx A Team Collaboration

Making the Films

The Digital Diaries: Rx films and website were created for young people. It’s a new way of taking youth inside the world of other youth who are battling trauma, and working through a range of mental health challenges and treatment. It’s a dynamic way to show them how other kids think, feel, and communicate. The characters and storylines are based on actual therapy cases and adapted by nationally recognized therapists. The films use the talents of trained young actors to play the roles of actual clients. We’ve done this in order to preserve the confidentiality of the real young people in therapy, from which the cases are derived. All of the films for this series were created collaboratively; relying on an ensemble effort that included therapists, actors, a writer/director and an Emmy Award-winning film team. The project has been two years in the making, including development, script writing, rehearsals, location shoots, music, art work, and film editing. The Project is overseen by Julian Ford, Ph.D. and Rocio Chang, Psy.D., University of Connecticut Health Center and its Center for the Treatment of Developmental Trauma Disorders (CTDTD). The series is produced and directed by Ed Wierzbicki, along with the New Zenith creative team working collaboratively with CTDTD and UCONN Health.

James sits in front of the camera
The DDRX team sets up a new shot
Samantha sits on a bench and journals

Communication & Healing With the Help of a Smartphone

In this series, you meet six unique young people, ages 13-19. We nicknamed them “Trauma Avengers” because they are fighting to overcome some extremely tough mental health challenges. We equate their resiliency and tenacity to having super-powers! Through a progression of recorded video conversations created on their cellphones and other devices, the Trauma Avengers speak openly to their therapist—and indirectly to the viewer. Each on-going story-line and short “monologue-style” film takes us into the character’s private life in very open and revealing ways. This is their inner world; and they don’t hold back their thoughts and feelings. Through these Digital Diaries, a viewer/participant can identify with the Trauma Avenger kids as they sort through their changing feelings, thoughts, and actions. We encourage viewers to watch these films with a therapist, and to engage in a dialogue with your therapist about the characters’ journey in this series.

Gabby on her phone at the skatepark
Isabella lays on the bed with her phone
Joshua lays on the bed talking to his tablet