Become a social impact investor for as little as $50.
Barry Joseph of Global
Kids recently came to visit the Nonprofit Commons to discuss the potential of
gaming for social change. It has become increasingly popular in gaming to blend fantasy-based solutions with real-life
social issues. And organizations like Global
Mechanic, Games for Change, and
the AMD Foundation have been leading the way.
Global Kids is a nonprofit educational organization for global learning and
youth development. They work "to ensure that urban youth have the
knowledge, skills, experiences, and values they need to succeed in school,
participate effectively in the democratic process, and achieve leadership in
their communities and on the global stage."
Joseph's initiative, the Online
Leadership Program, integrates a "youth development approach when
tackling international and public policy issues with youth media programs that
build digital literacy, foster substantive online dialogues, develop resources
for educators, and promote civic participation."
The Online Leadership Program has been working with youth in New York City
to design video games for 10 years now. This time around, they've partnered
with Gamestar Mechanic and AMD to bring together the Playing 4 Peace Challenge.
March and April, youth can go to Gamestar Mechanic, design your own game, and
submit it," explained Joseph. "In May, one youth will win a new
laptop with other cool prizes. But more importantly, scores of good games will
be produced, by youth, judged by youth, for youth, on the topic of peace."
As academics, activists — and even gamers of old
— harness and reinvent the power of gaming as a new medium for social change,
kids will keep imagining and designing a better world for us all. For all of
you awaiting the arrival of the next revolution to begin with a bang,
behold! It just may begin with the sound of powering on a video game.
Alexandra BezdikianInteractive Events and Video ProducerTechSoup Global@alebez
This work is published under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 4.0 International License.
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