He helps them communicate with parents in a happier and healthy way.
'Yako' is Okay backwards - and what we really want people to know is 'it's okay to not be okay.' Feelings are feelings and the most helpful thing you can do is talk about them. The idea is kids write down what they are feeling and post it into Yako's pouch. Parents can read the note and write a reply. This opens up a communication channel in families, with the aim of promoting healthy mental well being for kids.
So how you do you that?
The Mouth of the YAKO acts a flag between the child and parent to show if there is a message. When the child wants to communicate, they write a note, put it in the Yako's pouch and turns his mouth in a 'sad mouth' (the bear has a 'popper that allows the mouth to turn freely').
The parent can then answer the note 'from YAKO' and then turn the sad face into a happy face. The child will then know that they have a reply.
It doesn't have to be too heavy a subject but we have found it starts a communication with your child on things that are on their mind. I tried it on my son Jake. He's knows he's talking to me but he is more at ease communicating with the bear. We spoke to a child psychologist about this...more on that later.
We wanted to create toys that helped kids communicate with their parents in a positive but playful way. But also allow parents to find out without stress what their kids are thinking about, what may be worrying them and enable the parent to give advice.
In today's society it's so easy to feel you are not okay, not normal. We wanted kids to know that not being the same as everyone else is OKAY. We are all different and that is what makes us all special.