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Matter Unlimited Delivers with 'Bricks for Kids' Installation to Raise Awareness of Children’s Mental Health



Crafted out of nearly 35,000 toy bricks, the heartfelt sculpture can be viewed at New York’s Hudson Yards June 16th through Labor Day

Matter Unlimited Delivers with 'Bricks for Kids' Installation to Raise Awareness of Children’s Mental Health

Since the start of the pandemic, kids have been some of the most affected – cut off from school, friends and the normal rhythms of childhood. The unfortunate result has been a national surge in childhood anxiety and depression. Children in foster care have been hit especially hard, often being forced to relocate multiple times, living in unsafe conditions and cut off from caring adults, causing trauma that can do lasting harm. 

Hoping to bring attention to this too often ignored issue, Children’s Rights, the New York-based national child advocacy organization, commissioned strategic and creative consultancy Matter Unlimited to conceive and design “Bricks for Kids”.  The new sculpture installation, located at New York’s Hudson Yards, is intended to build awareness for Children’s Rights’ national campaign focused on children’s mental health struggles during these unique times.

'Bricks for Kids' was constructed by Brooklyn-based fabricator, The Factory, depicting an idyllic scene of children playing on a seesaw, painstakingly crafted out of nearly 35,000 toy bricks. The statue is a striking visual reminder of what childhood should be and of the threat mental illness poses to children’s wellbeing - now and as adults. It offers an invitation to join Children’s Rights in helping to ensure that all children have the childhood they deserve. 

Photo by David Handschuh

The installation was officially unveiled at 10 Hudson Yards on June 16th during a launch event featuring Children’s Rights CEO, Sandy Santana, former foster youth, Sadaf Sheikh, and Dan Galpern, Children’s Rights Board Chair. It will be available to visit through Labor Day. 

“Children’s Rights wanted to really make the case that joy and happiness need to be a basic right of childhood,” explains Rob Holzer, Matter Unlimited Founder and CEO. "It is a national disgrace that so many children are subjected to such harsh circumstances in one of the wealthiest countries in the world. Whether it be dangerous foster care facilities or immigration detainee camps, Children's Rights is advocating for hundreds of thousands of vulnerable kids whose childhoods must be protected. We hope this installation reminds people and moves them to donate to this incredibly worthy cause."

Matter not only led the design and creation of the 'Bricks for Kids' sculpture and overall messaging, but paid media strategy and support for future activations of the installation. “Working with The Factory and Children’s Rights was a very open and collaborative process,” says Holzer. “We were able to figure out exactly what the sculpture should be, what it should represent and strategically build the right context so that anyone walking by could learn about these issues and the ways they can support Children’s Rights in their mission.” Accordingly, viewers will be encouraged to share photos of the sculpture on social media to spread the word and to take a brief online quiz about child mental health in the US. 

For Matter Unlimited, 'Bricks for Kids' represents a chance to not only inspire audiences, but drive impact for a group that’s really making a difference. “Organisations like Children’s Rights are needed now more than ever and we’re happy to do whatever we can to support them,” stresses Holzer. “We wanted the sculpture to be representative of the childhood that kids deserve - one that's free from trauma and pain and full of family, friends and community. With this installation, we believe we’ve helped create something powerful that can inspire real action, so that kids can stay safe and healthy.”

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Lore, Mon, 28 Jun 2021 18:00:31 GMT