I’ll admit this feels like it should be a blog post I’m writing in November, but there really isn’t a “season for giving back” it should be something we do all year. Recently, I had a project that touched of the idea of “giving” — something that feels like it has a slightly different meaning to a lot of different people. There’s no right way or wrong way to give, just as long as you’re doing it.
Last week I finished up working with a student thought a great program called SPARK and I got to meet some of the other students and their mentors at the end of the session fair. It was great to see how many people were willing to donate their time every week to meet with a junior high student (and how much the students enjoyed it). The program hopes that all of its mentors find a renewed excitement about their job by participating in SPARK. Essentially it should be a win-win. Funny enough, I think all giving ends up being a win-win. Donating money to a charity near to your heart gives you a warm and fuzzy feeling. You feel good after serving meals at a soup kitchen or handing out toys at a toy drive, even just taking the time to help an elderly person figure out their cell phone – I think deep down all of us like ourselves a little more for helping out our fellow human.
Giving doesn’t have to be just time. I’ve mentioned it before but here at The Game Aisle, it’s part of my mission to donate the games submitted for review. Every few months I pack up boxes and deliver them to a local park district, teacher, Boys and Girls Club, or library. I’ll admit it gives me a nice warm-fuzzy feeling inside and I really like that part of my job. I know there are other inventors and designers who take time out of their busy schedules to give back. Some go and talk to school children about being inventive. Bruce Lund acts as Santa and hands out toys to children in need every Christmas (which is very fitting!). The folks from Educational Insights did a group outing a few weeks ago to pack up toys for underprivileged kids. Many companies donate toys and games to The Toy Bank after Toy Fair and thought out the year. The question is figuring out what works for you.
As we enter the summer months; I urge you to not only play some more games with your family and friends, but to find a little bit of time to spread the love and do something for your fellow human/community. Maybe it’s game related, maybe it’s not — either way I’m sure you’ll get a feel as good (if not greater) than well fought for gaming victory!
If you have a great idea on how to give back that IS game related, please list it below! Thanks!!