Extra Life Jax, GAME ON!

Playing games is all about meeting milestones, and the amazing volunteers raising funds and awareness through Extra Life Jax have acheived a new high score! In 2017, the group recruited 418 gamers who raised $28,057.01 for their local Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals – UF Health Jacksonville & Wolfson Children’s Hospital. These funds will stay in their community to purchase life-saving equipment, educational resources and child life activities for both pediatric programs.

Extra Life unites gamers around the world all for a good cause – to help children in their community. Volunteers spend a year recruiting members to their team, attending local Guild events and promoting their fundraising page that showcases their passion for helping kids. All of these efforts culminate during CMN Hospitals’ annual 24 hour gaming marathon during the first week of November.

 

On Game Day, Extra Lifers can play from the comfort of their own couch, at a friend’s house, at a rec center—anywhere is fair game! Unique to Jacksonville, the local Guild hosts a live 12 hour marathon at the hospital and encourages fellow game enthusiast to bring out their computers, consoles, and equipment to raise money “For The Kids.” With the help of the UF Health Jacksonville IT Team and support from Microsoft, more than 30 gamers came out to stream, play and share their Extra Life fundraising page.

“I game because I like gaming and why not do what I like to do while raising money and awareness for kids in need.” Says Brenda Llyod, a 2nd Year Extra Lifer.

Brenda Lloyd, 2nd year Extra Lifer, playing with friends at the 2017 Extra Life Jax Marathon.

GAAM presenting their $1000 check during a live stream at the 2017 Extra Life Jax Marathon.

Guild President, Mandie Marron, set up for Game Day.

None of their success would be possible without support from the Northeast Florida community. Local gaming venues such as Good Luck Have Fun and Video Game Rescue hosted Jacksonville Guild meetings throughout the year. Chicago Pizza at the Jacksonville Landing and Panda Express provided food for the hungry gamers during the marathon. Adding a new element and boosting the variety of gaming options to this year’s event, the Microsoft Store at the Town Center set up virtual reality games and Xbox consoles for all participants to use throughout the day.

Brittani Crawford, who designed the 2017 Extra Life Jax marathon shirt, emphasizes the importance of connecting a community of gamers with the Extra Life cause.”Extra life is important because it takes a group and community that is already active and Jacksonville and inspires their charitable nature. It gives an outlet for charity to a group that might not move on their own; it gives an outlet for a ‘clique’ to pull each other up and reach out. It’s especially important to have pride and strength in your local community. We, being gamers and the Jacksonville gamer community, come together not just as friends but as gamers who do good.”

Looking to pass $30k in 2018, Extra Life Jax is already off to a great start. Not even two weeks into the New Year and local gamers have already raised more than $700. If you are interested in learning more about how you can play your favorite games all while making a difference for the pediatric patients treated at Wolfson Children’s Hospital and UF Health Jacksonville, visit extra-life.org to sign up or email extralifejax@gmail.com to join the Extra Life Jacksonville Guild planning committee.

FTK – “For The Kids” banner proudly displayed at 2017 Extra Life Jax marathon.

 

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