By. Adam Bankhurst
Take a minute to think about what that word means to you.
Better yet, think of what that word can mean to a child suffering from a disease that he or she does not deserve.
Life, unfortunately, does not deal in fairness, and the cards that are dealt to us are not always in our favor. What life does give us, however, is the power to make a difference. We, as human beings, have the power and the choice to make a real, tangible change
in this world, and it all begins with the courage to take that first step.
My step, my first of many, is Extra Life.
Extra Life, for those unfamiliar, is a 24-hour gaming marathon that raises money for the Children's Miracle Network. It all began in 2008 to honor the memory of a truly incredible young girl named Victoria Enmon. She lost her battle with acute lymphoblastic leukemia, but not before touching and changing the lives of all those around her.
This truly life-changing cause caught fire and Extra Life has been raising more and more money each year for kids like Victoria around the country. Last year alone, they raised over $2.3 million!
Victoria's story and Extra Life inspired me and brought me to one incredible realization:
I live in Columbus, OH, right next to The Ohio State University. With over 55,000 students, I can bet many of them like video games and helping others. Why not bring Extra Life to this great school? Why not try and capture these students and gamers and raise an unprecedented amount of money for our local Children's Miracle Network Hospital, Nationwide Children's?
I put my plan in action and got in touch with Extra Life, and they introduced me to BuckeyeThon, the largest student-run philanthropy group at OSU. They host, among other fund-raising events, a Dance Marathon that raised over $608,000 for Nationwide Children's Hospital last year.
After working with incredible people from their organization over the past few months, I can proudly say that my dream is now a reality.
We have been planning and preparing for Columbus' Extra Life Event on November 2nd, and it has been one of the most rewarding projects I have ever worked on. We are hosting our event at the Ohio State Union, and we will have marathoners, tournaments, prizes, food, and so much more. We will also have events taking place around Columbus that will help further benefit Nationwide Children's Hospital. We also encourage you to host your own event, and take this cause to even greater heights.
We are on the verge of something truly spectacular, and it becomes even more so each and every day.
However, I can't do it alone. I need your help. I need you to help me change the lives of kids like those pictured above. While this started as an Ohio State project, it has grown beyond our wildest expectations and has become a movement.
How can you help? Simple.
Join our team. Support me.
Spread the word. Raise money. Then, on November 2nd, play games all day long while helping cure these incredible young boys and girls. All the money you donate goes directly to the Children's Miracle Network, and you can actually go and see your contribution making a difference.
The power to save lives and make a difference is inside each and every one of us. Every step, big or small, is one step closer to a cure we are all fighting for. As Mahatma Ghandi once said, "You must be the change you wish to see in the world."
Without the courage to take action in what you believe, the world will just keep on spinning as it always has.
Take that first step.
Walk hand in hand with me as we fight this battle.
Together, let's be the change we want to see in our world.
Extra Life: http://www.extra-life.org/
Join our Team: http://www.extra-life.org/index.cfm?fuseaction=donordrive.team&teamID=10646
Nationwide Children's Hospital: http://www.nationwidechildrens.org/
If you have any further questions, please don't hesitate to contact me at [email protected]
Adam Bankhurst is the co-founder of The Gamerís Advocate
. Send him all your thoughts or questions to [email protected]
You can also follow him @adambankhurst