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E-Sports Club to host a 24-hour livestream fundraiser for Baystate Hospital

Chris Gionta

This weekend, playing video games will not be “just for fun” for some Springfield College students. Instead, it will be raising awareness and money for health.

Springfield College’s new E-Sports Club will host a 24-hour Extra-Life Fundraiser from Saturday, Nov. 7 at 8:00 a.m. until Sunday, Nov. 8 at 8:00 a.m.

“For this Extra-Life Fundraiser, our main goal is to stream the Springfield College E-Sports club playing a variety of games from 8:00 a.m. on Saturday all the way until 8:00 a.m. on Sunday,” said Kadin DeRuijter, one of the leaders of the E-Sports club and a leader of the event.

“And any money that we fundraise during that period of time will go directly to Baystate Hospital, which is a member of the Children’s Miracle Network,” DeRuijter added.

A theme of the event is health, and the result of the event should benefit children’s health. The idea for the event originated when Baystate Hospital reached out to the club.

“[Baystate Hospital] actually reached out to us via Instagram,” said DeRuijter.

The Director of Events from the hospital reached out to the club and showed how both sides of the partnership could benefit. The hospital could promote the E-Sports club’s event, which as a result would promote Baystate Hospital, the Children’s Miracle Network, and Extra-Life.

“We kind of thought that partnering with Baystate could be very prosperous, because we’re creating connections that we can utilize in the future — I mean we’re fundraising for a good cause,” said DeRuijter. 

“I’m a gamer; people who are in the club are gamers. We’re doing something we enjoy, so it’s kind of a win-win situation. And it’s just kind of building on the levels that this club can take at this school.”

With such a long time period for the stream, one can expect a variety of content from the club. On the club’s Instagram page, as a caption of a promotional video for the event, they state, “24 hours. 17 games. 8 streamers. 3 scrimmages. And SO MANY children.” DeRuijter then described what viewers should expect on Saturday/Sunday.

“It’s going to range from anything from MMO (massively-multiplayer online) video games to strategy games, to some shooter games,” he said. “Most games that I would say are popular right now are games that we are going to try and promote.”

Springfield College’s E-Sports club will not only be playing in large online games where they will be one player among hundreds, and not only be playing against the computer, but they will also be competing as a team against other schools.

“Rocket League; we’re actually going to be scrimmaging another college. Valor; we’re going to be scrimmaging another college.” DeRuijter said.

Not only is DeRuijter associating this event with the E-Sports club and Baystate Hospital, but he would also like to promote health itself along with another Springfield College program.

“In addition, what we’re gonna try and tie into this is — Luke Salls, Steven Cone (our secretary), and I are all members of the PEHE (Physical Education & Health Education) department — so we’re going to try and promote health through E-Sports,” he said. “And that whole aspect of the club is going to accelerate after this week, because we have an idea of how we want to keep going forward.”

With an event like this occurring for a club still basically in its infancy, it can definitely open doors for future opportunities.

“This event has opened up a realm of opportunities for the future. An intern from the American Cancer Society actually reached out to us via Instagram again,” said DeRuijter. “But I think that there’s definitely other ways that we can tie E-Sports into other aspects of life.”

This event will be beneficial for all parties involved. It appears to be a big step in the right direction for the Springfield College’s E-Sports club, and an opening to a realm of new opportunities. Additionally, as is the goal, it will be an amazing way to raise awareness and money for Baystate Hospital, as well as health and children’s health in general. 

Photo Courtesy Springfield College Marketing & Communications

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