The Julia’s House Gameathon returns for autumn half term, with another opportunity to flex your gaming skills and raise money for vulnerable local children and families.
The challenge is simple: set the duration of your gaming challenge, create a fundraising page with JustGiving and share details of your challenge with friends and family. Then play your favourite games while you fundraise for Julia’s House over the weekend of 24/25 October.
Online games have been helping children with life-limiting conditions
Many of the children we look after here at Julia's House are keen gamers themselves. While the country was locked down, gaming offered many people a means to stay connected with friends and extended family, but for a child with a serious health condition, gaming is also a way to escape their limitations, enabling them to become a footballer, a racing driver, a pilot or even a soldier.
Andrew Orman and Ashley Dickinson, Senior Carers at Julia’s House, have spoken about the important role gaming has played with the children they’ve supported during lockdown:
“We game with a lot of the children - Fortnite and Rocket League are two of their favourites, the older kids like to play FIFA. Andrew and I try to compete against them but we’re not the best!” says Ashley. “I enjoy Minecraft – it’s nice to see a finished building that you’ve made with them. At the moment we’ve got a little Minecraft world that we’ve created and they’re all building their own little houses."
Staying connected with the outside world
“Gaming provides a gateway for the children to communicate with their friends. A lot of them can’t go out and play football or take part in standard sport. Quite a few of them play wheelchair football but at the moment they can’t even do that, so for them to be able to play FIFA and play football on the screen, that’s a great accomplishment. One of the lads who plays Fortnite refers to himself as the best Muscular Dystrophy player in the world. He’s got an illness and he recognises that, but it’s quite amazing that he’s able to play these games with his friends. And it’s great that we can be involved.”
“Over the lockdown period we were able to run weekly online gaming sessions and chat to the children while we were playing. These are families that have been isolating, so we weren’t always able to go out to see them in person, but it meant we could still have that fun and maintain that contact,” adds Andrew.
“For a lot of the children, gaming is where they’re just as equal as anyone else. Sometimes there are some physical limitations based on their conditions that mean they can’t participate in other sports as easily as others can, but with gaming it’s an equal footing, they can be as good as anyone else.”
Andrew and Ashley are both looking forward to the Gameathon and will be planning more online sessions with the children to help them brush up on their gaming skills ahead of the big weekend.
If you want to flex your gaming muscles and take part, Julia’s House have some top tips:
- live stream as you play so people can donate in real-time
- wear a crazy costume
- get friends to suggest additional challenges to help you reach your fundraising milestones
You can join the Gameathon as a solo player, in a squad or tag-team, using a console of your choice to complete your gaming marathon.