Nite To Unite Sees ESA Foundation Raise $800,000

The U.S. computer and video game industry raised more than $800,000 at the industry's annual "Nite To Unite For Kids" dinner and auction to support charities working to i...
The U.S. computer and video game industry raised more than $800,000 at the industry's annual "Nite To Unite For Kids" dinner and auction to support charities working to improve the health and welfare of children, the ESA Foundation announced today. Over the past seven years, the event has raised over $7.5 million for children's causes. This year, funds raised by the ESA Foundation will benefit Web Wise Kids, HopeLab, Working Achievement Values Education, and PAX (see below for more information). In addition, the Foundation is establishing a scholarship program to support minorities and women pursuing educational opportunities in the computer and video game field. Apart from the fundraising, the highlight of the evening was the bestowal of the ESA Champion's Award to Dan DeMatteo, Vice Chairman and Chief Operating Officer of GameStop Corp. DeMatteo was chosen in recognition of his leadership and contribution to the interactive entertainment industry. Co-chairs of this year's event were Brian Farrell, President and Chief Executive Officer of THQ, Inc.; Bill Gardner, President and Chief Executive Officer, Eidos, Inc.; and Graham Hopper, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Buena Vista Games. "The annual Nite to Unite dinner is about competitors joining in a common cause on behalf of children, and for me it is truly the most gratifying night of the year on the industry calendar," said Doug Lowenstein, president of the Entertainment Software Association (ESA), the trade group representing U.S. computer and video game publishers. "Each year, as a result of the unwavering support throughout the industry, we are able to make a real difference in the future of thousands of young people." Following is brief background on the organizations benefiting from this year's event: Web Wise Kids (WWK) - Web Wise Kids is a California nonprofit organization founded with the mission of empowering today's youth to make wise choices online. Since 2002, WWK has specialized in providing easy to use, school-approved Internet safety education to youth ages 11 to 16 through computer games. HopeLab - Funds will be provided to HopeLab for distribution of Re-Mission, a computer game that empowers and educates young people living with cancer. Re-Mission is a challenging game that takes the player on a journey through the bodies of young patients with different kinds of cancer. Players destroy cancer cells, battle bacterial infections, and manage realistic, life- threatening side effects associated with the disease. Working Achievement Values Education (WAVE) - WAVE's mission is to motivate youth to complete school, lead productive lives and make a valuable contribution to their communities. The focus of WAVE is to curtail dropout rates and the problems associated with not completing school. PAX - PAX works to bring an end to the gun violence epidemic that kills eight children every day. Through innovative public health campaigns, PAX promotes practical, non-political solutions that all Americans can embrace to protect families and children and work immediately to save lives.

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