Who we are
We are Mari and Camilla, two old friends and youth advocates. Camilla is a youth mental health professional and Mari is a visual artist.
We believe that all children have the right to play freely and we started Play Club to give city kids that opportunity.
Camilla is a youth public mental health researcher and the co-creator of Youth Aware of Mental Health (YAM), an evidence-based mental health promotion and suicide-prevention program that has been conducted with more than 85,000 children and adolescents in 16 countries. She is a doctor in Health Sciences with an MA in Anthropology.
In her work, Camilla centers play and create space for inclusive and youth-led dialogue about mental health and everyday life. She is currently working on a research project exploring out-of-school spaces and activities and how these correlate to youth mental health. By investigating leisure time, she hopes to bring forward equitable youth initiatives, spaces, and practices in the post-Covid recovery.
Camilla is originally from Stockholm, Sweden, and she remembers the after-school program she used to attend Monday through Friday; a place where you could hang out and do what you wanted in your own time.
Mari is a visual artist and designer who has exhibited in notable institutions and galleries nationally and internationally. Her work is in the permanent collection at Musée d'Art Moderne de Paris. She has collaborated on designs with the Museum of Modern Art and Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum in New York.
Mari is curious to discover the world around her and considers art as a field for endless research. Since becoming a mother to her daughter Lenka eight years ago, she has endeavored in her work as an artist to understand the world as children see it. She believes that art is a language that allows children to express themselves in ways that go beyond words, encouraging them to make new connections between themselves, other people, and the world around them.
Mari is originally from Tokyo, Japan, and her childhood was filled with great seasonal food and fun traditional craft activities.