UK gaming brands and influencers are teaming up to raise enough money to help the charity Make-A-Wish UK grant 100 wishes to critically ill children.
Wish 100 Week kicks off on July 19th and will be the culmination of a campaign to raise £200,000 through livestreams and gaming challenges.
Make-A-Wish says it’s an urgent fundraising drive after hundreds of wishes were put on hold during the pandemic. In addition, new research shows 63,000 young people in the UK are currently eligible to have a wish because of their diagnosis, and that figure is set to grow.
UK content creators supporting the campaign include GaGOD, Beardageddon, Ethan Gamer, Overworld (the education business linked with NitroLukeDX) and It’s Tegan, while brands that have committed funds towards #Wish100Week include Ten Square Games, Sports Interactive, Codemasters, Huuuge, Hutch, MTG, Aream, First Touch Games, Fusebox, Venatus, Curve Digital and Stillfront.
The campaign was co-created by Make-A-Wish patron Rob Small, president of digital gaming brand Miniclip. He said: “Many charities around the globe have been very badly hit by the Covid pandemic, particularly those that work with vulnerable or critically ill people. Make-A-Wish is one such charity. Their mission of ‘creating life-changing wishes for children diagnosed with serious illness’ is something that really resonated with everyone at Miniclip and our mission of ‘unleashing the gamer in everyone’. We are excited to be a part of this campaign.”
Technology and video game-related wishes are one of the request types the charity has been able to grant during lockdown. Make-A-Wish says it’s seen a fourfold increase in demand for them in as many years.
For children like Mikey, eight, from Portsmouth, for example, who can’t eat or speak because of a mystery illness, his wish for a PS5 has been a “godsend” according to his mum Chevonne, and he’s skilled at Fortnite.
Another mum explained: “The walls got smaller for Tommy in hospital, but gaming expanded them again.”
Child Psychotherapist, Lia Younes, backed up their claims, saying: “Having a critical illness can hinder a child’s ability to engage in play, particularly with their peers. This has been particularly challenging during the pandemic when so much more has been taken away from them. Thankfully, virtual games have offered them a safe space to access all the benefits of play and helped them to stay connected.”
Make-A-Wish is asking others from the gaming community to get involved. Anyone who raises more than £100 will get a campaign t-shirt and those who raise £250 through their fundraising page have the chance to be entered into a prize draw to win a PS5 (there’s terms and conditions of course).
Dom is an award-winning writer who graduated from Bournemouth University with a 2:1 degree in Multi-Media Journalism in 2007.
As a long-time gamer having first picked up the NES controller in the late ’80s, he has written for a range of publications including GamesTM, Nintendo Official Magazine, industry publication MCV as well as Riot Games and others. He worked as head of content for the British Esports Association up until February 2021, when he stepped back to work full-time on Esports News UK and as an esports consultant helping brands and businesses better understand the industry.