A group of kids at the Children’s Hospital of San Antonio got their fill of video games on Thursday as a team of gamers who raise money for the hospital brought in plenty of distractions.
The fifth floor of the hospital was packed with Xboxes, Playstations, board games and children who are not too shy to take advantage of them. During the two hours the room was set up, 7-year-old Albany Garaby said she got to play some of her favorite games.
“Batman, NBA, and Angry Birds,” she said with controller in hand while playing Injustice on an Xbox.
John Massio, her father, said it’s the first time she’s had fun since being admitted a few days ago.
“She’s been in bed all week and this is her first time actually getting out of the room,” Massio said.
All of this was organized by a nonprofit called Extra Life and the Microsoft Store. Once a year in October, participants in Extra Life hold a 24-hour marathon gaming session where they are sponsored to play games by individual donors. Matthew Kassell, secretary of the san Antonio Chapter, says they organized this event to give kids a chance to get out of their rooms.
“[We wanted] to have fun with kids and give them a good time while they’re dealing with something that’s not fun at all,” Kassel said.
Last year the San Antonio chapter of Extra Life raised $29,000 for the Children’s Hospital of San Antonio. Jason Meza is the foundation specialist for the hospital and said that money can go a long way.
“All the money that Extra Life raises goes through the Children’s Miracle Network, which is a national center, and then it comes right back to us,” Meza said. “All of the money is sent into an unrestricted which helps us finish our building.”
Meza said this event allows those helping to raise the funds to see the kids that they’re supporting. the goal for this october is to double the amount of money generated.