The IGDA Foundation (IGDA-F) has partnered with companies including Shacknews, Greenlit Content, HyperX, and ReKTGlobal, individuals from organizations like Rooster Teeth and Kinda Funny, and others to organize Play It Forward, an 8-hour streamed fundraiser.
Starting at 10:00 a.m. PT tomorrow and hosted on the Shacknews Twitch channel, the event will feature Black, disabled, trans, and other underrepresented voices seeking to pull in $10,000 to support efforts to increase diversity in gaming.
During Play It Forward, the IGDA-F will welcome Sarah Bond, vice president of the gaming ecosystem at Microsoft, to give the Jerry A. Lawson Award to Laura Teclemariam. Currently, director of product management at WB Games in San Francisco, Teclemariam demonstrated incredible grit, resilience, and accomplishments in her 17 years of product management, interactive media design, and software engineering at companies including EA and Microsoft.
Hosted by Kahlief Adams of Spawn on Me, a podcast spotlighting people of color in the gaming industry, the fundraiser will feature programming including leaders and CEOs speaking on Black representation in games, a competitive esports team composed of people paralyzed from the neck down called the Quad Gods, and Anita Sarkeesian to talk about the Online Games and Harassment Hotline.
Notable trans gaming community members including Kdin Jenzen from Rooster Teeth will speak on trans acceptance and inclusion in gaming. Greg Miller from Kinda Funny, Elyse Willems from Funhaus, and Steven Spohn of AbleGamers are among those who will discuss allyship and good ways to support members of underrepresented communities in and out of gaming.
In between these important topics, content creators will stream gameplay, celebrating the medium that connects us. They and everyone involved will encourage viewers to help achieve the $10,000 goal, which will fund the IGDA Foundation Online Diversity Program.
“Helping bring so many amazing people together to support Play It Forward has been a real joy,” said Asif Khan, CEO of Shacknews. “The IGDA Foundation’s mission of inclusion and representation in the games industry is an extremely important endeavor, and we couldn’t be more excited to help amplify the voices of its members and serve the goals of the foundation.”