As important as it is to promote philanthropy when kids are still young, sometimes it’s logistically impossible to put kids to work for your favorite charity. Take Habitat for Humanity; construction sites aren’t for kids (at least not the younger set).
A toddler swinging a hammer is a safety issue on a job site no longer. Thanks to a new online game, kids can build virtual houses while the money paid to access the games goes to build real houses for Habitat for Humanity’s Honduran chapter, and a host of other charities.
Elf Island takes a $5.95 monthly membership fee to do its good works (the basic level is free so you can try it out to see if your kids have an interest, but with the money going to charity, it’s worth it to pay one month). The money is split among Habitat, Plant-It 2020, Wild Aid and Polar Bears International. Each game is charity appropriate, so playing to help polar bears in the real world requires racing against the Earth’s rising CO2 levels in an effort to
track female polar bears and help them avoid the melting ice in the virtual one, helping Plant-It requires planting trees in Niger, etc.
I’ve never been a big “get the kids on the computer to game” Mom, but what Elf Island’s parent company has termed mirrored gaming (actions online equalling a mirrored action in the real world) intrigues me. It seems like one of those win-win-win situations. The kids have fun, learn something about the world and learn how to help others.
Oh yeah, and a worthy charity gets some help. Let’s add another to the win column.
Source: Atlanta Journal Constitution