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Hospital Foundation running online Gaming for Good fundraiser as part of Festival of Trees

The Grande Prairie Regional Hospital Foundation is asking the local community to get their game faces on and get ready to smash in support of local health care and hospitals. Communications Officer Nicole McDonald says the idea leading up to the “Gaming 4 Good” event was to find different, more virtual ways to raise money for the foundation.

“Our executive director and board were pretty open to going ahead ad trialing it for a day and seeing how it goes,” she says.

McDonald adds she was inspired to suggest the idea by her kids who she says play video games a lot. Partnering with the Alberta e-Sports Association, McDonald says she quickly discovered the avid gaming community present in Grande Prairie.

“It is out of the box but at the end of the day we have a community, I found out, as I started working with [the] Alberta e-Sports Association, they connected me with some local people who do gaming tournaments here.”

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“It’s something that’s fairly kid-friendly because we were looking at replacing our ‘Peter Pan Pyjama Party’ that goes with our festival of trees. They are kid-friendly titles, and according to our partners at e-Sports, we do have a strong Melee community here,” she adds.

For the online event, participants will play Nintendo’s Mario Kart 8 DX and Super Smash Bros Ultimate on the Nintendo Switch console, and Super Smash Bros Melee on a PC emulation software.

Anyone who wishes to play is able to sign up, as there is no age restriction.

“The age range is all the way from, I think we had some eight-year-olds register, and I’ve had people in their 40s who are super excited to participate,” says McDonald.

The goal for the event is to raise $7,000, with a portion being designated to go to a diversity and inclusion fund that will be starting for hospital staff to apply to. The whole event will be taking place on the popular online streaming platform, Twitch.

The gaming fundraiser is set to take place on November 28th at noon and run until 7 p.m. McDonald adds if the event is successful, the foundation will be looking at expanding it to a full week, as well as for potential future iterations. Those looking to participate can sign up for $5 online.

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