The goal of Child’s Play is to “improve the lives of children in hospitals around the world through the kindness and generosity of the video game industry and the power of play”. In 2003, Mike Krahulik and Jerry Holkins, authors of the Penny Arcade webcomic, called on the gaming community to help the Seattle Children’s Hospital during the holidays. They quickly had a garage full of gifts for ill children and raised over $250,000.
Brian Cope, our star Project Manager in Thruster, first heard about Child’s Play in 2006 when he had the opportunity to donate at a local gaming community fundraiser. He nominated Child’s Play “because of it’s something simple everyone can do to give children a little bit of an escape from an unpleasant situation. It’s very easy for the community to give just a little bit of money that helps improve the attitudes of the patients.”
Over the years, Child’s Play has received incredible feedback from parents, doctors, friends, and patients regarding the positive influence of games during hospital stays. Studies have shown that children able to play games while undergoing painful procedures request less pain medication. Technology like the Kinect and Wii Balance Board allow for children to participate in physical therapy activities in an enjoyable, approachable environment. Children also struggle with a lack of normalcy or routine during hospital stays; being able to play a multiplayer game with a sibling or play a handheld system during a late-night treatment helps ease these additional stresses.
In 2011 along they raised $3,512,345 in gifts and cash donatinos. We are excited to see what 2012 holds for this charity and are pleased to be able to donate to this great cause. To learn more, visit http://www.childsplaycharity.org/.