Many games task players with becoming a hero and saving a fantasy world – but can playing video games actually make a difference in the real world? Many would argue yes, in part due to the recent emergence of popular gaming-related fundraising events and charities. From all-day gaming marathons to charity-focused online storefronts, there’s no shortage of ways for today’s gamers to give back and help make the world a better place – let’s take a look at a few of our favorites:
Extra Life is an annual fundraising event where gamers sign up to collect donations from friends and family, pledging to spend a “day of play” marathoning video games in support of sick and injured kids. Since 2008, over 100,000 organizations and individuals have participated in the program, raising over $40 million in support of Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals across the nation.
Keep an eye out on our Twitter for more details on Filament Games’ Extra Life fundraising efforts later this year!
Humble Bundle is an online gaming storefront most notable for its “Humble Bundles,” limited-time bundles of curated indie games available for purchase using a pay-what-you-want model. Prior to buying each bundle, users are given the option to allocate a chosen percentage of their purchase to a charity of their choice. Despite the fact that charitable donations are an optional step in the process, Humble Bundle has raised over $100 million towards charities in its 8-year existence, supporting groups like Action Against Hunger, Child’s Play, and more.
Child’s Play is a Penny Arcade-founded charity that seeks to improve the lives of kids in pediatric hospitals by donating video games and toys. Their official website lists 2 ways to support the program – gamers can either donate a certain item to a specific hospital based on their online wishlist, or simply make a cash donation via PayPal. The organization has raised over $44 million since its inception in 2003, with the funds going towards the purchase of new game consoles, accessories, games, and more, providing a healthy and necessary distraction for children dealing with stress and boredom in hospitals worldwide.
This list is simply the tip of the iceberg, with other charity events and organizations like Games Done Quick, St. Jude’s Play Live, and more becoming treasured annual events among gamers. Have you participated in any recent gaming-related fundraising efforts? We’d love to hear your story – feel free to get in touch via Facebook or Twitter!