Your kids, assuming they are anything like mine, have probably spent
a lot some time playing Disney’s Club Penguin, which is the top-ranked virtual world for children. It’s impressive.
However, Club Penguin does something even more impressive than virtually entertaining and engaging children the world over — it also makes a difference in the reality of millions of kids and families. I’m talking about the real reality.
Disney’s Club Penguin is in the midst of their sixth annual charity program called Coins for Change that introduces kids to social good through online play (that’s their tagline, and I’m a fan).
Basically, it’s a bake sale. Players bake millions of virtual in-game cookies (three types to choose from) for the online bake sale, and then they use their virtual coins to buy them. It’s just like a real bake sale, but not nearly as messy. Plus, it is going to raise a million dollars (USD), which is about a million dollars more than any real bake sale I have ever been a part of.
Players will be rewarded for their participation (in addition to the wonderful feeling one gets from doing good things) by transforming into new holiday characters (for a limited time) when they buy special bake sale cookies. All players will be able to transform into toy cars, and club members will be able to turn into reindeer puffles and “frost bites” that allow them to temporarily freeze in-world items (I assume this is to maintain freshness).
The three charities splitting the money are pre-selected, and players will vote for the percentage each receives bases on the virtual cookies they purchase with their in-game coins. The three areas are medical help, building safe places, and protecting the earth, so it’s a win-win-win.
Through programs like Coins for Change, Club Penguin has donated over $9 million dollars to charities all over the world, which, in addition to doing good, has helped to raise the social consciousness of more than 175 million players in the online community.
Prior to the current Coins for Change program Club Penguin has already helped over one million people in 42 countries by funding the following projects:
- 20 schools built for over 20,000 children
- 25 school libraries built for over 50,000 children
- 27 playgrounds for 85,000 children
- 33 clean water projects for over 50,000 children and families
- Youth engagement and education programs around the world for over one million children and their families
Club Penguin’s Coins for Change continues through January 2, 2013. Let your kids play for change today!
Read more from Whit Honea at his site Honea Express and the popular group blog DadCentric. You can follow Whit on the Twitter or Pinterest (his opinions are his own and do not reflect those of Babble or most rational people).