Wednesday, September 28, 2011


Early this year, I had that minor issue with someone using one of my images without permission (and without following the terms of its Creative Commons license).  In that post, I mentioned that I had requested a $50 donation to Child's Play.

Since then, I have received a number of e-mails from folks asking about game-related charities. At the time, I only knew of Child's Play and Toys for Tots. A few more have shown up since then.

Since it's now well into September, we are nearly to the holiday season. This is when charities start to gear up for their busy season, and I want to encourage you to give to charity.

These are the charities I know of who are either game-related or are tied in some way to gamers which I can recommend to you:

Childs Play - Originally started by the Penny Arcade guys, Child's Play initially focused on getting video games and video game systems for low-income or otherwise disadvantaged children. Over the years, it's grown well beyond that. I can, without hesitation, recommend Child's Play as a charity worth supporting.

Jack Vasel Memorial Fund - Tom Vasel is one of the internet's best-known and most prolific board game reviewers. Over the years, he's done an excellent job of letting us into his personal life in bits and pieces. Tom is also an amazing human being. In 2010, his son, Jack, was born too early. After struggling for longer than anyone had expected, he passed. The boardgamegeek community rallied and raised tens of thousands of dollars to help with the medical bills. Tom wishes to pay that forward. The Jack Vasel Memorial Fund gathers funds which are then given to gamers who are in need.

Foodmachine - I only recently became aware of this one. Apparently, a bunch of New Jersey-based Warmachine players formed it to give money to the local food bank.What started small and local has snowballed, with prizes now provided by Privateer Press. It's a great idea.

Toys for Tots - The USMC's annual toy drive also accepts games. My FLGS participates every year by putting out a big box for donation collection. They collect year-round, however, and also accept cash donations. Check the website for the local chapter near you.

And not game-related, but relevant to me, is Movember. I've decided to participate this year.  Those of you who know me know that I have facial hair. In fact, I have had this facial hair since the mid nineties. I shaved it off for one month a few years back (and was paid $300 to do so). On October 31, I will be shaving it all off again, and then regrowing just the mustache, with normal facial hair to begin resuming in December.

I don't get any kickbacks or prizes for any donations to any of these charities. I support the missions of all of them (in one or two cases, I do so financially).

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