Photos: Batch Two

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We’ve just uploaded over 500 more photos to the Gamers for Giving 2014 album on our Facebook page! Big thanks go out to Maher El-awar, Brian Johnson, and David Saunders for collecting media content throughout the weekend! There are still more pictures to come, so be on the look out!

Photos can be viewed on the Gamers Outreach Facebook page, located here.

And the final number is…

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The results are in! Thanks to attendee entry fees, donations we received on-site, Peggle 2 entries, as well as PayPal donations and excess sponsorship, Gamers for Giving 2014 was able to raise a total of $20,682.37!!

For those curious, here’s how the numbers broke down…

  • Online Registration & donations (pre-event): $12,970.00
  • Raffle ticket sales, Peggle, door sales, and on-site donations: $5,510.00
  • Stream donations, mail-in donations, and excess sponsorship: $2,202.37

Total = $20,682.37

This is absolutely incredible news! Thanks to everyone who was a part of this year’s event, we were able to surpass our $20,000 fundraising goal in support of Gamers Outreach programs in 2014.

As mentioned during this year’s event, Project GO Kart (our initiative which provides portable video game carts to kids in hospitals) currently serves ~6,000 children per year. We estimate that on average, one cart is used by 3 children each day in the hospital environment (1 cart = ~1,100 children benefiting per year). With funds on hold since last year (as we’ve waited for the Xbox One to launch) Gamers Outreach will be constructing an additional 4 carts, bringing the total number of children served by the program to 10,000 kids per year by the end of Summer.

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Now, with the addition of funds raised at Gamers for Giving 2014, we’ll be able to increase that number to nearly 15,000 children per year. In addition to the resources generated by Gamers for Giving, if additional fundraising efforts take place throughout the year, it’s very possible Project GO Kart could be serving nearly 20,000 children or more by the end of 2014. That means that in a single year, thanks to all the generous people who supported Gamers for Giving, the Project GO Kart initiative could triple its current size. That’s really amazing.

On the military end of the spectrum, for those who’ve been keeping up with Fun For Our Troops, you’ll know that we spent much of last year relocating our donated games inventory to our home base in Michigan. Currently, we’re sitting on a mountain of video games that are ready to be sent overseas to deployed troops. Thanks to Gamers for Giving, a portion of the funds raised at this year’s event will be used to help us pay for shipping costs associated with sending these care packages overseas. Additionally, in order to reach more deployed troops, Gamers Outreach plans to work with Eastern Michigan’s ROTC department to help identify troops abroad who will benefit most from our initiative.

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You can keep up with the work of our organization as our initiatives expand over the course of the year at http://www.GamersOutreach.org.

We’d like to send our deepest thanks to everyone who came out and supported this year’s Gamers for Giving. From our crew of casters and volunteers, to everyone who attended and supported online – thank you!!

Also, it must be mentioned, one of the main reasons Gamers for Giving exists in the capacity that it does is because of the support we receive from our friends and sponsors in the industry. Folks like Astro Gaming,  the Intel LANFest series, and Twitch.tv help make our event possible. Their support means we’re able to maximize the impact our donations and attendee entry fees have on Gamers Outreach charity projects. Please swing by our Partners page and show each of our contributors some love. They certainly deserve it!

As many of you know, this event was not without its challenges. On Saturday, limited bandwidth greatly impacted our ability to conduct some of our event’s planned activities, primarily for folks who participated in the BYOC LAN. As mentioned in our previous emails and updates, we are currently in the process of working with Eastern to rectify the situation. We have proposed a solution which we believe would be most fair for attendees who were affected, and would still provide those who wish to compete in our League of Legends tournament with the ability to do so online. We will be issuing a final announcement next week, as we are currently in the process of finishing discussions with Eastern. If you have any questions regarding this topic, feel free to send us an email via contact@gamersoutreach.org.

From everyone at Gamers Outreach Foundation, THANK YOU for supporting Gamers for Giving 2014! We hope to see you at next year’s event!

Photos: First Batch

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Our first batch of photos from Gamers for Giving 2014 have been posted to our Facebook page, courtesy of @jamsessionzzz. We’ll be uploading many, many more over the coming days – so be sure to keep an eye out! All photos will be posted to our organization’s Facebook page.

If you have some of your own you’d like to share, tweet them to us @GamersOutreach!

Gift for LAN Attendees

As those of you who attended Gamers for Giving are aware, during the event on Saturday, Eastern Michigan University’s Internet Service Provider experienced technical difficulties which greatly reduced the available bandwidth within the student center. Despite the issue being unrelated to our own equipment, our networking team worked around the clock to try and provide a solution to attendees who were affected. Eventually, in the very early hours of Sunday morning, the student center’s full bandwidth capabilities were restored, and Gamers for Giving attendees were able to gain access to the internet as originally intended.

The incident has since become a meme amongst our volunteers…

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We have decided to commemorate ‘the great bandwidth blackout’ of Gamers for Giving 2014 by making the above meme into a sticker, which will be mailed to all Gamers for Giving LAN attendees for free. It’s our way of thanking you guys for staying with us, and remembering our history together as a community as the event and charity cause continues to grow.

In addition to the meme sticker, we’ll also be including our 6th annual standard event sticker, which has become a collectible for folks who’ve been attending the Gamers for Giving LAN party over the years.

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LAN attendees who wish to receive these stickers only need to email the following information to contact@gamersoutreach.org…

  • Write “GFG Stickers” in the subject line of the email.
  • Provide us with your LANFest username.
  • If you purchased multiple tickets, tell us how many so we can send you stickers for your friends.
  • Provide us with your mailing address. Your address will only be used by us to mail the stickers. Your address will not be shared with our partners, or used by us in the future for any purpose.

We will be accepting requests for stickers until Saturday, March 8th. After we have processed all requests, we will print the stickers and distribute them to attendees. Stickers will only be printed once, so be sure to email in your request!

It should also be noted that since 2008, in the span of time we’ve hosted Gamers for Giving within Eastern Michigan University, this was the first time internet bandwidth was an issue for our event. Eastern has been very supportive of our organization’s efforts, and we believe this was an isolated incident. We are in the process of working with the University to properly address Saturday’s bandwidth limitations, and plan to provide further updates to our LAN attendees in the coming days.

Thank you!

Our team of volunteers has finally arrived home from Gamers for Giving 2014 tear down. Whew! What a weekend. Big thanks to everyone who supported the cause! We’ll be adding up the donations and releasing the results of everyone’s hard work in the next couple of days! But first, much sleep.

Support & Donate

This weekend, we’re trying to raise $20,000 to do more of this:

Gamers for Giving is a competitive video game tournament & LAN party that helps raise money to build portable video game carts for children in hospitals, much like the cart shown in the above video.

Additionally, funds raised from the event are used to distribute video game care packages to U.S. troops deployed overseas.

If you’re unable to attend this year’s event in person, we invite you to make a contribution, and join us during our live broadcast on http://www.twitch.tv/GamersOutreach. The stream will begin at 11:30 AM Eastern on both Saturday and Sunday.

Here is the tentative schedule for this year’s stream. All times are Eastern.

Saturday, February 8th

  • 11:30 AM – 1:30 PM | Call of Duty
  • 1:30 PM – 1:45 PM | Transition
  • 1:45 PM – 3:45 PM | Peggle
  • 3:45 PM – 4:00 PM | Transition
  • 4:00 PM – 6:00 PM | League of Legends
  • 6:00 PM – 6:15 PM | Transition
  • 6:15 PM – 8:15 PM | StarCraft 2
  • 8:15 PM – 8:30 PM | Transition
  • 8:30 PM – 10:30 PM | Call of Duty

Sunday, February 9th

  • 11:30 AM – 1:30 PM | Halo 4
  • 1:30 PM – 1:45 PM | Transition
  • 1:45 PM – 3:45 PM | League of Legends
  • 3:45 PM – 4:00 PM | Transition
  • 4:00 PM – 6:00 PM | Call of Duty Finals
  • 6:00 PM – 6:15 PM | Transition
  • 6:15 PM – 7:30 PM | Peggle
  • 7:30 PM – 7:45 PM | Transition
  • 7:45 PM – 9:00 PM | Halo 4 Finals
  • 9 PM to 10:00 PM | LoL Finals

 

Gamers for Giving has begun!

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Gamers for Giving 2014 is this weekend, February 8th and 9th! As of this post, our team of volunteers is in the process of setting up this year’s event. We have a fantastic weekend in store, and we can’t wait for you to join us!

Here are a few last minute reminders for those who plan on attending:

  • Available Passes: Passes for the CoD Ghosts, Halo 4, and Killer Instinct tournaments are still available and can be purchased in advance here. Unsold passes will be available at the door on a first come first serve basis.
  • LAN – Sold Out: The BYOC LAN party is entirely sold out. No additional passes will be sold at the door.
  • CoD Ghosts Players: Remember to bring your Xbox 360 wired controller, your Ghost game disc, and a headset (optional). Astro mixamps will be provided.
  • Halo 4 Players: Remember to bring your Xbox 360 wired controller and headset. Astro mixamps will be provided.
  • Killer Instinct Players: Rember to bring your fight sticks / controllers!
  • Waiver: All participants must download and sign the event waiver. Please bring this to the event.
  • Game Drive: Gamers Outreach will be accepting used game donations at Gamers for Giving! Read more here.
  • Canned Food Items: a local Detroit non-profit will be accepting canned food items at Gamers for Giving. Read more here.

We’ll see you at the event!

Our Partners

It takes a lot of work to put together Gamers for Giving. We’re thankful to be working with a variety of partners from within the video game industry who generously dedicate resources to help us maximize our ability to impact lives through Gamers Outreach charity programs. Without their support, it would be incredibly difficult for us to host Gamers for Giving. So with that said, we’d like to give this year’s sponsors a huge shout out, and a big virtual hug, for helping us with this year’s event.

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Peggle Trophy Complete!

StrongSide’s Peggle 2 Championship trophy is now complete! This 15 inch tall monument to Peggle 2 will be awarded to the lucky gamer who is able to finish in 1st place during StrongSide’s Peggle 2 tournament!

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Entry into the tournament will be $5. Rules and maps will be posted at the event.

We’d like to send a special thank you to Amber “Refinerii” Conger who was able to construct this gorgeous piece of metal in an incredibly short time frame. You can read all about the construction process on her blog at http://refinerii.net/.

Best of luck, Peggle competitors! We’ll see you this weekend at Gamers for Giving!

 

Canned Food Drive

A group called “Ravers Against World Starvation” (RAWS) will be accepting canned food donations at Gamers for Giving 2014. The organization is a local Detroit non-profit organization, which is on a mission to help the community by collecting canned and non-perishable food items at different events for folks in need.

The organization will be accepting canned food and winter clothing. Donations can be made in the DJ area of Gamers for Giving, which will be located in between the BYOC LAN and console tournaments.