The GameChanger crew and special guests created a day to remember for staff and patients at Methodist Children’s Hospital in San Antonio!
Check out this video of the event ——–>
We’re off to a successful start in 2018!
Along with Hope The Monkey Plushies and other fun toys, we brought along today’s top gaming stations that included 3 Xbox consoles and a PS4 with a VR set up. All of which we set up in an open floor area of the hospital allowing any patient or sibling who wanted to play the opportunity to do so.
Patients and their families were able to choose from a variety of games including Fusion Frenzy, Injustice, NBA Playgrounds, Star Wars Battlefront 2, Minecraft, Driveclub, and Madden 2018!
To say we had our choice of games is an understatement! Thanks to Xbox for donating the one-month Game Passcodes!! Thanks to their amazing donation, all patients were able to choose from hundreds of titles.
Due to the staff and patients playing it safe and taking extra precaution around the flu season, we were expecting a low turn out of children that would be able to leave their rooms. These are the standards we respect and take very seriously at GameChanger. That said, even if we are able to give one or two patients a fun experience then it’s all worth it.
Overall we had a great turnout as 15 kids came out to play games and enjoy themselves with many of them staying for the entire length of the event!
That’s not all! This time around we had some amazing influencers in attendance.
Everyone involved was amazing and respectful of the space and the families who were in attendance.
A big thanks goes out to all of our special guests and the Child Life staff at Methodist Children’s Hospital. Your commitment to help out and be present makes the GameChanger Play Day events a reality and is incredibly important to us.
Play Days are celebratory days filled with gaming, tech, and special guest influencers. None of our efforts would be possible if not for the partnerships with companies like Xbox and other partners who donate gaming goods and toys for the children.
For more information on GameChanger Play Days and how you can help our mission, please visit our website and follow us on Twitter to stay up to date on all of our events and fun donation drives where you can donate for the chance to win amazing one of a kind prizes.
On November 7th 2017 GameChanger hosted a Play Day at UCSF Benioff in San Francisco. Along with our team, volunteers from EA and Twitch were in attendance to play games with the kids and hand out fun gifts to hospital patients and their siblings.
When bringing therapeutic gaming and VR to children in hospitals, there’s always a source of inspiration to behold. It comes from witnessing the resilience of children patients who have a sense of wonder that only a young person can have and from the caring Child Life staff we meet.
In a similar way, inspiration fills the room when you experience volunteers coming to one of our Play Days. Generally speaking, these are people who like to take a moment out of their busy schedules to bring a bit of cheer to children staying in hospitals.
Volunteering was a core element of our recent GameChanger Play Day.
GameChanger Charity was thrilled to be invited to EA’s 11th Annual Nonprofit showcase. Located at EA’s headquarters in Redwood City, California, the day featured various charities that expressed interest in working with volunteers from the EA team.
The offer we established for employees was to join us for a Play Day at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital where they would spend time playing games with children staying at the hospital in order to bring a bit of fun to their day.
The more we talked with folks at EA the more we could see that the people who came by to discuss GameChanger’s mission were enthusiastic about putting energy toward a cause.
Fast-forward a couple weeks later to UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital in San Francisco. Not only did we have four amazing team members from EA join us, we also had a crew from Twitch Charity in attendance along with talented music streamer Tammy Byerly.
We had two rooms available for use. One of them, a digital AV lab that UCSF Benioff created to be used exclusively by their patients, featured a green screen along with just about any resource one would need to create a TV show and let their imagination run wild.
We set up 2 VR devices. One, an HTC Vive, which had various games like Fruit Ninjas and Tilt Brush. The other, a PSVR with VR Worlds that featured a virtual luge game. David Arditti and Nate Aschenbach, our resident VR Specialists and all-around good guys, managed the gaming and helped guide the kids through new experiences in the virtual reality space.
The next room over was a teen lounge where multiple consoles were set-up with a variety of games including Guitar Hero, Star Wars Battlefront, FIFA 2018, Super Smash Bros on Wii-U, and an Oculus VR headset featuring Medium, an art game where you draw in a 3D space!
We also had games spilling out into the hallways including Marvel’s Lego Avengers and Angry Birds Star Wars, which is also where our table of gifts was located where patients, brothers and sisters were able to choose from an assortment of fun gifts.
Toys we brought along were supplied by our awesome partners at Hasbro and included Mr. Potato Head, Nerf Basketball sets, Upwords Board Games, Baby Alive dolls and Marvel Iron Man Action Figures. SkyLanders were available as well, which Activision has so graciously donated.
It seemed that as soon as we set up a group of kids came to play! With excited smiles, the patients and siblings adventured through VR landscapes and enjoyed playing the various games with our volunteers.
A highlight to note, Tammy Byerly played her guitar for one of the patients who was delighted to experience such a unique talent singing right in front of them. As a special bonus, EA donated some of their top new games to the hospital so patients could have access to some of the newest and best video games out today.
A big thanks goes to the volunteers from EA and Twitch that joined us for GameChanger Play Day! Of course, we can’t thank UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital enough for having us. Stay tuned for more from GameChanger Charity and our partnerships with awesome companies like these by following us on our Twitter!
Our mission to spread VR to youth in hospitals everywhere is making its way across the country!
We have a vision to help bring an immersive experience to children in hospitals to effectively take patients away from the stress and anxiety that can be caused from their existing conditions and the treatments they are going through by bringing them into a new world where their minds can wander and give them the ability have some fun.
Recently, our GameChanger VR experts made a stop at Methodist San Antonio to help with a new VR install. During our time at Methodist San Antonio, we had the opportunity to run through demos for many of the Child Life team members who were enthusiastic about having the new set-up for the children to experience VR while going through what can be a taxing time both emotionally and physically.
The install at Methodist San Antonio was unique this time around as it was the first wall-mounted room install. Located in the new teen room, a generous amount of space for experiencing all that VR has to offer, the set-up we installed is now an ideal space for patients and their friends and families to convene and experience VR together
Our set-up was created with some of today’s top VR products including the HTC Vive and Gear VR. The Google Tilt Brush game was a favorite with everyone who used the set-up due to the fact that it gives players a chance to acclimate to the digital world at their own pace and express themselves artistically. The Child Life staff was on board and equally excited, as the kids were about future possibilities involving 3D Printing and Live Streaming through the new VR set-up.
Even before the team was packing up you could feel the anticipation rising throughout the halls of the wings of the children’s hospital. Many of the children at Methodist San Antonio were pre-scheduled to use the new VR set up! And of course we were available the next day (and even now!) to troubleshoot and support the Child Life professionals with any pointers and tips in order to make sure the new set-up was all in working condition!
If you happen to be a Child Life Specialist and want to work with GameChanger on bringing a VR experience to kids at your hospital, please contact us (http://gamechangercharity.org/howyoucanhelp/) today to discuss how our awesome and innovative team at GameChanger can help make virtual your reality!