Video games have a longstanding relationship with charity and fundraising. Even before major developers and publishing houses got in on the action with multi-million dollar initiatives, gamers had been coming together to raise money for good causes for years. Today, streaming platforms make it possible for any casual gamer to raise a small fortune by hosting their very own gaming marathon. However, fundraising efforts have been around since the days of tabletop games like Dungeon & Dragons, with that community still hosting regular events to raise large sums of money for charities. 

Established Charities Embrace Gaming 

Many established charities have capitalized on the appetite for gaming to raise money for good causes. The Teenage Cancer Trust is one such example. Established in 1990, this UK charity strives to improve cancer care for younger patients, raising millions every year. The charity promotes many initiatives to inspire would-be fundraisers, with gaming marathons being one of them. Fundraisers are encouraged to embark on game-a-thons for 6-24 hours, although participants are free to play for as long as they want. 

Other charities encourage similar initiatives. In the United Kingdom, charities like the NSPCC offer plenty of resources for livestreaming fundraisers. Meanwhile, in the United States, the Make-A-Wish Foundation has the Stream for the Wishes initiative, which encourages streaming activities to raise money for gaming-related gifts and experiences for sick children. Some of these wishes are fairly simple, with recipients granted things like consoles and hardware. However, the Stream for the Wishes enterprise has even helped youngsters record music videos for original tracks they’ve written about their love for gaming. 

How Major Developers Are Helping Out 

While many existing charities promote gaming-inspired fundraisers, many developers and publishers are channeling vast sums of money into charitable enterprises. Take Riot Games, for example. The developer announced the introduction of the Riot Games Social Impact Fund back in 2019, a nonprofit partnership with ImpactAssets. The fund provides investment opportunities to a range of beneficiaries, from individuals to entire organizations. To date, the Riot Games Impact Fund has raised more than $50 million, with more than 450 organizations benefiting. 

Although Riot isn’t alone in its philanthropic efforts, the developer is certainly one of the most charitable. Partnering with the likes of GlobalGiving, Riot hosts many in-game fundraisers. In the past, League of Legends players have been able to pick up exclusive skins, with all proceeds raised going to good causes. In the past few years, Riot has raised millions of dollars through these efforts. Want 

to see if any of your favorite pros are using one of these charity skins? Get the full LCS schedule here

Start Gaming for Charity 

If you’re eager to support a good cause, gaming provides an ideal platform. Limited edition character skins and weapons reward your donations with something you can actually put to use when gaming. Prefer to take a more proactive approach? If you know your way around Twitch, why not host your own gaming marathon to raise thousands for your favorite charity?

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