Leveraging 20 years of successful social impact campaigns, the ESA Foundation is hosting a five-day streaming event, December 13-17, to raise funds for programs which help underrepresented young people learn 21st century skills while preparing for careers in the video game and other STEAM-related industries. Called “Games for Good 2021,” or #GG2021, it will benefit the Foundation and three other nonprofits and feature celebrities, streamers and esports players participating in fundraising streams on their various platforms, including YouTube and Twitch.
“Last year, after the pandemic hit nonprofits hard, we hosted a very successful fundraising livestream, so we’re doing it again,” says Anastasia Staten, executive director of the ESA Foundation. “For the second straight year, we’re bringing together the video game community to benefit nonprofit partners who support underrepresented students passionate about video games but short on the resources needed to develop STEAM skills. With help from our sponsors and well-known streamers and esports players, and most importantly their fans, we hope to benefit these very important causes in a big way.”
One highlight of the event will be an Apex LegendsTM tournament, with players competing for a $100K charity prize pool provided by Electronic Arts on, Dec. 17. During the week, other big-name streamers will raise money playing their favorite games for the ESA Foundation and its three partners, Black Girls CODE, Gameheads and Girls Make Games.
Among the streamers are Jacki Jing, Chell, LaurenZside and Elyse and James Willems. The ESA Foundation’s Twitter page will provide daily updates and complete details. Viewers of #GG2021 can donate directly by visiting the official Games4Good2021 Tiltify page or by following directions provided by the streamers.
Last year’s week-long event, “Say Goodbye to 2020 For Good,” or #GG2020, marked the debut of the Foundation’s virtual end-of-year fundraiser. It also took place in mid-December and involved more than 40 participants raising funds for charities. #GG2020 generated the following results:
This year’s beneficiaries are nonprofits dedicated to supporting underrepresented and under-resourced youth. Via diverse programming, including hands-on workshops, Black Girls CODE builds pathways for young women of color in the U.S. and abroad to embrace the tech marketplace by introducing them to skills in computer programming and technology. Girls Make Games, which has served more than 20,000 girls worldwide, operates a series of summer camps, workshops and game jams designed to inspire the next generation of designers, creators and engineers. The Oakland-based Gameheads uses video game design and development to engage, prepare and train low-income youth, ages 15 to 24, in the Bay Area for careers in the tech and video game industries.
Also benefitting from #GG2021 will be the ESA Foundation’s scholarship program, which, since 2007, has provided more than 400 women, non-binary, transgender and minority college students with financial and professional development opportunities to turn their dreams of making video games into careers. The Foundation leverages the power of the video game industry to support educational opportunities for students of all ages.
“For video game fans as well as individuals and companies looking to make a year-end donation to a worthy cause, #GG2021 is a perfect opportunity—and you’ll get to watch fun streams featuring big names and up-and-comers alike,” says Staten. “So we encourage you to check out the livestream and help create impactful opportunities for underserved students across the country.”
More details, including an up-to-date schedule, can be found at ESAFoundation.org/Games4Good or on Twitter. Follow the hashtag #GG2021 on social media to keep up with the fundraiser’s progress and highlights.
About the ESA Foundation
The ESA Foundation awards scholarships to the next generation of industry innovators and supports schools and nonprofits that leverage interactive entertainment technology to create meaningful opportunities for America's youth. It seeks to harness the power of the video game industry to create positive social impact and supports geographically diverse projects and programs benefitting grantees of all ages, races and genders. To date, the ESA Foundation has raised more than $23 million for a wide variety of worthy causes, primarily through its signature fundraising gala, Nite to Unite.