A few years ago, I became interested in a charity called Child's Play. The charity was set up by the online comic about games and gamers known as Penny Arcade. Maybe some of you have heard of it. The charity was created as a direct result of people like Jack Thompson insisting that ALL gamers are murderers in the making. Our response? Over two million dollars raised since 2003.
The way Child's Play works is the charity has a network of over 45 hospitals set up all over the world, and new hospitals are being added every year. The charity sets up Amazon wishlists for the hospital that includes games, toys, and books - all ranging between less than $5 to $400 (for consols like X-Box 360s and PS3s). Gamers can choose a hospital of their choice and pick one or more items to purchase for that particular hospital. Amazon will then ship the item(s) directly to that hospital. Easy as cake!
If you can't decide which hospital to choose, you can donate money directly to Child's Play's paypal account, or you can send money to the address on the Child's Play's homepage.
All the toys, games, and consols stay with the hospital so that all kids have a chance to play during their hospital stay. Instead of being bored and constantly reminded of their illness, children can play on a DS or PSP in their bed; they can play multiplayer games with other sick kids on the X-BOX 360 you provided for them. They can read books, play with dolls, and forget about their troubles for at least a little while.
Best of all, YOU get the gratification that you're doing something to make a difference in these children's lives. They may not know you by name, but your contribution - whether it be $1 towards a Child's Play fundraiser, the new DS system you picked out, or a $10 game - will create a little bit of happiness during their trying times.
Above, you are seeing a little widget for donations. My personal goal is to raise $500 for Child's Play. By clicking "ChipIn!" you will be redirected to a paypal page that will send money DIRECTLY to the Child's Play paypal account. I know it says my email address, but I promise you that the money will go directly to Child's Play.
Please help out any way you can. Even if it's just $1, every little bit makes a difference.