Spotlight: The AbleGamers Foundation
The Able Gamers Foundation is a fantastic organization that not enough people are aware of. To quote their website, “AbleGamers is a 501(C)(3) public charity enabling children and adults with disabilities to enjoy the world of video games.”
But what does that mean exactly?
AbleGamers works with both game developers and gamers with disabilities to make sure that everyone has a fair shake when it comes to playing video games. They consult with game developers to make games as accessible as possible, and also with disabled gamers to provide outreach to help them overcome the challenges they face in gaming. If you’re a game developer, or thinking about getting into development, check out their website Includification. This is AbleGamers guide for developers and publishers to get tips and guidelines on accessibility features. For disabled gamers, they also provide grants for gamers with disabilities to provide assistive technologies as well.
I met with Mark Barlet, the founder of AbleGamers at PAX East to talk about the work that his organization does. It’s a humbling experience when you think of how easy it is to just pick up a controller and play a game, and there are other gamers out there who want the same opportunity to experience a video game but have a disability that may prevent them from doing so. The work they do is incredibly powerful, and as gamers we should be as inclusive a community as we can. Here’s how you can help:
2.) Donate to their Charity: No Amount is too small, and the donations go straight to helping further the work they do. They are a recognized 501(c)(3) public charity. See if you can get your employer to match your donation! (Some major companies do this, so find out!)
3.) Donate via Amazon purchases: Amazon Smile is a feature of Amazon where you select a charitable organization and 0.5% of each qualifying purchase is donated to the charity of your choice. Since you’re probably already buying things on amazon, why not link the AbleGamers Foundation to your Amazon and provide a small donation everytime you buy something?
(You’ll have to select the charitable foundation when you sign up for AmazonSmile)
The work that AbleGamers does is truly awesome and they’re working to make sure gaming is available to anyone and everyone, regardless of disabilities. I wanted to do a spotlight on their organization to help bring awareness to this, as it was something I never thought about. Anyone can game, and it’s awesome that AbleGamers has been doing this for 10 years, helping to make gaming more and more accessible for everyone.
Source: AbleGamers Website