Whether you’re a parent, or a child, for spring cleaning or moving house, chances are you’ve probably had to throw away piled up old toys at some point. Sometimes those toys may have been hard to let go, a trusted childhood companion perhaps. But sometimes they were just cheap temporary whims, free and briefly-functional toys from McDonald’s and Chuck-e-Cheese’s. And chances are many of you have also wondered,
“How can I even recycle this?”
Because the one thing these toys usually have in common, is that they weren’t designed to be recycled, often containing both plastic and metal. So they mostly end up in landfill. Buried for the next thousand years. Slowly poisoning our lands, our oceans, our planet. And the toy industry is showing absolutely no signs of stopping either. In fact, it has been one of the few industries to enjoy sustained growth despite the global recession! These days, they make anything from life-like action figures to sports toys to even baby tablets (Yes. Babies definitely do not need tablets). There will always be a demand, and supply, for new toys.
But all that, just for a moment of a child’s fleeting attention. At some point you just have to ask yourself,
“Is this really worth it?
OUR SOLUTION: THE ABANDONED TOY STORY PROJECT
We are 3.14SR (pronounced Pi SR), a company with a mission to inspire social change through art and design. We believe it is time that we shift our mindset about toys, and by extension about consumption in general.
So we partnered with Hendra Priyadhani, an Indonesian artist who makes his art using old toys and household items, and together we hope to bring these toys to life, and send a simple message:
“Give your old stuff a second chance!”
The project began with the collection of unused toys from families, and surprise surprise, we ended up with a lot in absolutely no time! As it turns out, there is an abundance of families with piled up toys at home.
The next step is to have Hendra come from Indonesia to Hong Kong for his residency to create up to 12 pieces of toy art, culminating in an exhibition at the Asia Contemporary Art Show between the 29th of March and the 1st of April.
And this is where we need your help!
Your donations will help cover the costs of our exhibition (participation and logistics), totaling around $12000 USD. Extra money raised will be donated to the Little Yellow Flower Education Foundation – an NGO that helps underprivileged children by providing educational and emotional support.
But that’s not the end of the story. Hong Kong is just the first of many Abandoned Toy Story projects to come, as we aspire to spread the concept around the globe. This is just the beginning. We hope that our toy art can serve as reminders to be mindful of things we buy and throw away, and in the process, give some toys new meaning and purpose.
So please, help us bring old toys to life by donating to this campaign. Any amount would be helpful! Or If you’re unable to, even just spreading the word about the concept would mean a lot to us. Because at the very least we hope we’ve got you thinking more about the problem of toy waste. So the next time you want to buy that fancy new Avengers superhero toy for a child, remember that it is who the child gets to have fun with, what the child gets to learn, that truly matters.
*For more information about 3.14SR, check out our website at www.3point14sr.com