Wednesday, March 20, 2013

35 Day Project: Games for Change

Games for Change is the leading global advocate for supporting and making games for social impact.

If I were a millionaire, I would give a lot of money to worthwhile organizations.  Sadly, though, I am not a millionaire.  So I try to find ways to help charitable causes without necessarily giving money.  Every once in a while, I stumble upon a way to help that ends up feeling like an excuse to have fun.  Such is the case with Games for Change.

Games for Change is an organization that aims to create social change through playing video games.  Sounds a little too good to be true, right?  How can I create change just by having fun and playing video games?  Well, tonight, I found out.

I played a game created by Games for Change called Half The Sky Movement.  The game aims to raise awareness of the global need to empower girls and women.  The game stories involve women being able to empower themselves through micro loans and small business ventures, obtaining books for their childrens' education, and bartering goods and services for healthcare.  I really love the fact that the gameplay involves a story of empowerment, and the game tasks themselves are relevant to the story.  The best part?  After a certain level of gameplay is reached, a real life chartable gift is unlocked.  For example, while I played, I unlocked a real life gift, so that an organization called, part of the Pearson Foundation, donated a book (a real book, in the real world) to an actual child through Room To Read.  So, I played a game, and a child gets a book.  Seems like a great trade off.

play to help

What an amazing concept.  I think this will be an act of kindness I will be able to do more in the future.  The Half The Sky Movement game is played through Facebook, so be sure to check it out!  Also check out some of the other great games available to play through Games for Change.