Play Games, Save Lives

The Extra-Life charity event is a gamer-centric event (though any and all are more than welcome to participate/donate/contribute) where individuals or teams gather and promise to game for 24 hours straight through while blogging/vlogging the experience in a sort of crowd-sourced “telethon” of sorts to raise money and awareness for children who have fallen ill with any variety of terrible, sometimes terminal diseases. Thousands of gamers and hundreds of websites have been created for this event and together have raised MILLIONS of dollars to help treat and even cure these kids. To give them an “Extra Life”. ALL PROCEEDS GO DIRECTLY TO HELPING THE CHILDREN IN THEIR RESPECTIVE HOSPITALS. That’s so important to mention, it had to be capped, bolded, and italicized. A more honorable task, you’ll be hard-pressed to find.

We sometimes forget that as cynical and sarcastic as we, the “nerd/geek/gamer/fanboy” community can be, we also have some of the biggest hearts in the world and I’m constantly in awe of what we can do when our powers combined are given a focused target.

Extra-Life was formed in 2008 by a gentleman known as “Doc” who, during his time as a radio DJ, came to know a young girl named Victoria “Tori” Enmon that had been diagnosed with a rare form of leukemia. At the time, Doc had belonged to a group called the Sarcastic Gamer Community and during one of her hospital stays where she really couldn’t get out, he asked the community to help out by sending her games to raise spirits. They responded better than any could have hoped. Sadly, Tori soon after passed away, but her spirit lit a flame in Doc and the community at large and he dedicated himself to honor her memory by continuing to help children who had become innocent victims to horrible illnesses via the Chlidren’s Miracle Network. Doc has since quit the radio biz and gone on to work full-time for the CMN as their Radio-thon Director.

A video was made better describing this story, please watch:

WARNING: STRONG FEELS

Though I’ve said most of it all, perhaps reading it from the source might better urge you to pitch in. Here’s the excerpt from Doc himself:

Extra Life began in 2008 as a way of honoring a young lady named Victoria Enmon. Tori’s battle against acute lymphoblastic leukemia inspired the Sarcastic Gamer Community in a way that is difficult to describe. Members sent in video games and bought gifts to keep Tori’s spirits up despite many hospital stays and three bouts with the deadly disease.

Tragically, we lost Tori to cancer in January 2008. Later that year, I asked my partners at Sarcastic Gamer if they would be interested in Extra Life, a 24-hour video game marathon to raise money for the hospital that treated and fought beside Tori. In 2008 and 2009 Extra Life raised a combined $302,000, 100 percent of which went directly to help kids like Tori at my local Children’s Miracle Network Hospital (Texas Children’s Hospital).

While thousands of gamers, more than 100 websites and more than 12,000 donors were happy to support Extra Life, many expressed their desire to raise money to help kids closer to home. In what I can only consider destiny, in 2009 I left behind my radio career and went to work full-time for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals as a Radiothon Director. This life-changing event gave me unique insight into an incredible non-profit organization that helps kids all over the United States and Canada.

I quickly realized that Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals would be the perfect solution to expand Extra Life into more communities.

This year, when you sign up to play video games for 25 hours on Nov. 2, 2013, you won’t just be raising money for kids. You’ll be supporting LOCAL kids and their families. Kids right in your own backyard.

All the money you raise for Extra Life 2013 will go directly to the Children’s Miracle Network Hospital of your choice.

Do you want to have more fun than you can handle while helping some of the bravest (and smallest) warriors in your community? All you have to do is:

  1. Register and create your personal fundraising page.
  2. Try to get four friends or family members to sponsor you at $1 per hour ($25 each).
  3. Sit on your rear end and play all types of games for 25 hours straight on Saturday, November 2nd, beginning at 8 a.m.

I also encourage you to learn more about your local Children’s Miracle Network Hospital and to meet some of the kids we’ll be working to help.

— Doc

As if you needed your heart-strings tugged even harder, check out this excerpt from the “Why do you Extra-Life?” portion of their site.

We’d love to know what (or who) inspires you to Extra Life. Click here to share your story with us.

For Victoria, the girl who started it all

In 2008 Extra Life was founded in memory of Tori Enmon of Orange, Texas. Tori’s heroic battle against acute lymphoblastic leukemia has, to date, inspired tens of thousands of Extra Life participants, and hundreds of thousands of donors to stand up for local kids at their Children’s Miracle Network Hospital.

Read More

For David, 12 years cancer-free

David has experienced the need of children’s hospitals first hand — he fought Hodgkin’s lymphoma … twice. Now 12 years cancer-free, David participates in Extra Life to help the children’s hospitals that treated him.

Read More

For Lucas, his broken heart was fixed on Christmas

Open-heart surgery was the last way David and his wife wanted to spend Christmas morning with their new son, Lucas, born with a congenital heart defect. Joining Extra Life is just one of many tokens of appreciation from Lucas’s parents to the children’s hospital and staff that saved their son’s life.

Read More

For Cameron, who turned years into months

Cameron was told it could take up to two years for him to walk again, following the removal of a tumor. The young athlete’s determination to beat the odds paid off when two months later, he walked on his own. Cameron’s family is proud to Extra Life in his honor.

Read More

For the kids, from a little store with a BIG heart

Video Game Heaven, a video game store in Augusta, Ga., is helping kids in two ways: by keeping them off the streets and by playing in Extra Life to support sick and injured children in their community.

Read More

For the kids at my work, Children’s Hospital of Georgia

Just as in the less-than-appreciated but crucial role in League of Legends, the Support, Drew desires to financially support the kids he sees day in and day out at the Children’s Miracle Network Hospital he works at. He wants to help them fight and win battles against the “enemy” — their sickness or injury.

Read More

So, on November 2nd, the official “game date”, tune in and contribute to helping out. Every dollar counts. If you can’t afford to give, please contribute your time and small efforts by spreading the word to those who might. For all that, you can even start your own fundraiser! Here’s some links to friends of Nerd-Base who are:

Paul: http://www.extra-life.org/index.cfm?fuseaction=donorDrive.participant&participantID=51619

Adam: http://www.extra-life.org/index.cfm?fuseaction=donorDrive.participant&participantID=47390

Rob: http://www.extra-life.org/index.cfm?fuseaction=donorDrive.participant&participantID=51121

 

 

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