Actors Malcolm Shields (Crying with Laughter, Hallam Foe, The Lost World), Tom Freeman (Greyfriars Bobby, Casualty), Neil Kent and Anthony Bowers (Happy Holidays) are joining with other Scottish gamers to attempt a sponsored ‘video games marathon’ in August to raise money for the Edinburgh Sick Kid’s Hospital in its 150th year.
The event will take place during the weekend of the 6th-8th August, with hardcore gamers playing games non-stop for 24 hours, under 18s and others will clock up their hours over the course of the weekend. It’s the first of its kind in this scale in the UK. A blog is being launched for the free event and over 30 people have already signed up. It is hoped more people will sign up as word gets out.
Event organiser Tom Freeman said: “I’m really impressed by the response from gamers from Edinburgh and beyond. We already have people signing up from Peebles to Inverness, which is testament to the work of the Sick Kids in treating children from all over the country.” Others already signed up include the local ‘DownToForIt X’ gaming podcast and members of the ‘SCO’ gaming clan, both of whom will be streaming live feeds of their marathon attempts online.
The Sick Kids Save Point blog (http://sickkidssavepoint.blogspot.com/) will act as the central hub for the event, while all fundraising is through Virgin Money Giving. People can also follow the event on Twitter or facebook.
Edinburgh based actor Freeman was inspired to help the Sick Kids Friends Foundation when he worked for a while in the hospital canteen. “I wanted to do something to help the brave kids who are patients there, and to reward the medical staff who work tirelessly to help them.” he says “The idea of Sick Kids Save Point was also inspired by ‘ExtraLife’, an American Gaming marathon to benefit Texas Children’s Hospital. I wanted to do something similar for my local kid’s hospital. People often think of gamers as ‘geeks’, pallid antisocial troglodytes who are useless at social interaction. This is an opportunity for us to show that we can support a great local cause, a hospital in the heart of our community. 24 hours of non-stop gaming is going to be tough. In the same way that a marathon runner goes that extra distance for charity, we are going to be pushing past the ‘fun barrier’ here. ”
Organisers hope this will rise to thousands for the Sick Kids Friends Foundation.