Core to CannonDesign’s selection this year is its focus on addressing our nation’s mental health crisis. Our work with VCU Medical Center’s Virginia Treatment Center for Children earned finalist honors in the general excellence and health + wellness categories of this year’s World Changing Ideas. The project addresses head on the sad reality that at least one in five young people needs mental health care, yet most children (nearly 80 percent) who need mental health services won’t get them. Research shows that 50 percent of all lifetime cases of mental illness begin by age 14. Suicide is the third-leading cause of death in youths ages 10 to 14 and the second for those ages 15 to 24. One of the biggest barriers to combatting this crisis is resources – there simply aren’t enough care professionals and facilities devoted to children’s mental health.
In previous years, CannonDesign has earned World Changing Ideas recognition for its work with Cook County Bond Court in Chicago to redesign the social justice system and Jacobs Medical Center to integrate technology into remarkable patient experiences. Fast Company has also helped shed light on CannonDesign’s work to address climate change, reshape higher education, accelerate entrepreneurship, create resilient hospitals, evolve workplaces, bolster student health resources, and advance global health outcomes among other key initiatives over time.