When donations need a nudge, Twitch® streamer Meg Kaylee calls on her “One Dollar Army” for help.
It begins with one person donating just one dollar, and quickly creates a chain reaction of single-dollar donations, demonstrating the big impact that small gestures can have.
“I always like to remind people that when we all come together, it all adds up,” Meg said. “The way we get change is by everyone stepping up to do something, even if it seems small.”
Meg is part of a growing number of streamers who play and stream video games for more than just wins — they play for a cure.
In the past five years, the gaming community has raised more than $10 million for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital through the St. Jude PLAY LIVE® program, earning the attention of some of the biggest names in the industry, as well as large gaming conventions.
“We wanted to support a charity that does good internationally, and St. Jude freely shares its research around the world while also providing care to patients and families free of charge,” said Ben Bowman, one of the founders of GuardianCon, a gathering of gamers that has raised more than $4 million as part of St. Jude PLAY LIVE. “It’s a perfect fit for us.”
St. Jude PLAY LIVE engages thousands of gamers who play their favorite video games on streaming platforms. As they broadcast to friends and fans, viewers are able to donate and support St. Jude as they watch in real time.
In order to raise as much money as possible, the streamers often offer various incentives to their viewers. One streamer even let her viewers pick the color she would dye her hair.
“The first time I went to St. Jude, I left feeling so driven and so passionate, like I’d never felt before,” Meg said. “I wanted to do everything I could for these kids, and I wanted to show other people why this is a cause worth fighting for.”
Meg has since followed through on that goal — her fundraising team set the record for the highest team campaign in St. Jude PLAY LIVE history.
Meg and her teammates got creative to see who could raise the most money for St. Jude. Whoever raised the most created a challenge that the last-place team member had to complete.
We’re all playing for the same team, because it’s all going to St. Jude, but if you add some competitiveness, it really helps to incentivize people.
After two St. Jude PLAY LIVE summits — where gamers get to tour St. Jude and learn about the hospital — and three hospital visits, Meg is somewhat of a St. Jude fundraising veteran. But there are new faces also raising notable amounts of money through St. Jude PLAY LIVE.
One streamer, who goes by her username negaoryx, has only been streaming on Twitch for two years — and has only fundraised with St. Jude PLAY LIVE for one — but she has already raised $27,000 for St. Jude.
She was struck by the widespread kindness and generosity of the Twitch community.
“St. Jude PLAY LIVE is bringing together a community of people who are already good, already kindhearted and charitable. The goodwill and the kindness is already there, but St. Jude PLAY LIVE gives it an outlet,” negaoryx said. “It taps into the compassion and humanity in all of us.”
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