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A Celebration of Play Your Way and Mental Health Month

Over May 2022, we celebrated Mental Health Awareness Month with our #PlayYourWay Initiative, asking gamers to play the games that mean the most to them, whilst embracing the discussion around mental health and our connections between our games and how we feel.

We’re delighted to announce that the Safe In Our World community raised over £15,000 from community fundraising, donations and activity to support the charity, its future initiatives and the work we do within the games industry to support the people who work within it!

Throughout the month, we saw so many fantastic creators set their sights on the games that mean the most to them to celebrate #PlayYourWay and raise awareness around mental health. The variety of games that you chose highlighted the individuality of our relationships with games, and how we can celebrate games in so many ways. From community focused horrors such as Phasmophobia (we’re looking at you Hannah…) to wholesome Nintendo adventures to lunchtime Wordfall with the Press Engine team!

Enjoy this clip of Hannah definitely not panicking with Ellie pulling tarot cards in the dark….

Hannah panics in the corner of the Twitch screenshot, where her and Elliejoypanic pull tarot cards in Phasmophobia

Hannah definitely not panicking – screenshot from Lomadiah (twitch.tv/lomadia)

Or this clip of Chimp195 singing Staying Alive playing The Dark Pictures Anthology: Man of Medan…

It wouldn’t be fair to also give a nod to some of the forfeits you signed yourselves up for from your community, including Beanboozled (debatably the worst) and so much slime over at Jinjar’s community. So much slime

A huge thank you to the numerous companies and studios that hosted Sarah and Rosie to talk about the charity during Mental Health Awareness Week! We facilitated fantastic discussions, panels and talks about why mental health is so important, especially within the games industry.

Jinjar - bearded streamer in grey t shirt pours lime green slime over his head, previous slime/beans/chaos can be seen on his t shirt already.

Jinjar gets slimed for Safe In Our World (Photo from Twitter: @Jinjar247)

We also saw some physical challenges undertaken from the Safe In Our World community, including Genba Digital’s Team Wolf Run! Check out the team picture below.

10 people lined up jump into a mud river for the Wolf Run

Photo from the @GenbaDigital Twitter Account

The lovely team at Switch Players Norwich hosted a raffle benefitting Safe In Our World, where you can see the excitement unfolding. We saw a wonderful week of variety games from the Grads in Games team, from Harry’s journey into The Last of Us Left Behind, indie games from Dan and Alex’s Minecraft adventure.

Alex celebrates with his arms in the air

Alex defies the odds on Minecraft Chaos stream with Grads in Games

We also saw one of the largest stream trains supporting Safe In Our World, with The ‘Safe In Our Raids’ team ran by Pengy, raising an amazing £3,000 across the 48 hour event. 24 x 2 hour streams, 48 hours of wholesome chaos. We even saw Pengy bustin’ moves with the penguins in the stream summary. Excellent.

Pengy is in a penguin suit, dancing in front of 3 cartoon penguins in celebration of the 48 hour stream raid train event

Screenshot from Pengy’s celebratory stream (twitch.tv/TheRealPengy)

All in all, we’re so proud of our community for stepping up this mental health awareness month to champion our mission and eliminate stigma surrounding mental health. Every person who contributed has our sincere gratitude and thanks, whether you streamed, fundraised, got involved with activities, donated, or showed up to watch it all happen – you helped #PlayYourWay be the success that it was. Thank you.

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Play Your Way with Safe In Our World this Mental Health Month

For mental health month this year, we’re encouraging you to play your way.

Playing the games that mean the most to us is how we thrive on our personal connections with mental health and gaming. Whether you choose Animal Crossing or Dark Souls to relax, it’s the variety of games that players hold close to their hearts that highlights the individuality of these relationships.

What is Safe In Our World working on?

This year, we want to grow our #LevelUp Campaign to support more companies in more effective ways. That means more training, 1-1 guidance on implementing mental health strategies within the workplace, and content surrounding how to take the next steps! We’re working on resources for students and new-to-industry folk to know where support can be found, and what to look for when applying for jobs.

We’re committing to train more Community Managers and Content Creators in mental health training, free of charge. We’re growing our podcast, website and social platforms to be able to bring awareness to topics that are often under the radar and bring to light more resources and good practice within the games industry.

How can I help?

There are a number of ways you as an individual or a company could get involved! We’ve made a handy list below, to give you some ideas, but if you’d like to talk to any of our team about supporting us this Mental Health month, please do reach out!

  • Fundraise with us on Tiltify
  • Donate to our campaign
  • Donate directly
  • Host a raffle or auction
  • Invite us to come on your stream, podcast or panel to talk about our work
  • Provide fundraising incentives for creators
  • Organise work fundraisers & activities
  • Consider a royalty % of a game to support the charity
  • Signpost to our resources

Click here to download our assets pack for this initiative!

Fundraising Incentives

We’ve added some brand new exclusive merch for our wonderful fundraisers if they hit certain milestones! Check it out below.

We know that mental health month is every month, but May is our key fundraising period, and we’d love to have your support.

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Play Your Way: New Fundraising Incentives Added

As you might have seen, May is Mental Health Month, and this year we’re celebrating through our Play Your Way campaign.

As per tradition, we’ve got some limited edition merch for our fundraisers as milestones, to be able to give something back to our wonderful community. You can check them out on Tiltify, or below!

What is Play Your Way?

For mental health month this year, we’re encouraging you to play your way.

Playing the games that mean the most to us is how we thrive on our personal connections with mental health and gaming. Whether you choose Animal Crossing or Dark Souls to relax, it’s the variety of games that players hold close to their hearts that highlights the individuality of these relationships.

We’re asking the video games community and industry to play the games that mean the most to them, whilst raising support, awareness and funds for Safe In Our World so we can continue our mission in mental health.

 

Get involved AND get charity gaming swag? Win win!

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Safe In Our World Bundle Raised £35,000!

We’re delighted to announce that our Charity Bundle with Fanatical has raised £35,000!

We wanted to say a huge thank you to all of our wonderful bundle partners who got involved, and helped us raise this amazing total. We’re truly blown away.

Thank you to Outright Games, Starbreeze, Wired Productions, Storm in a Teacup, Curve Games, Deep Silver, SEGA x Sports Interactive, THQ Nordic, Ripstone, Firesprite Ltd, Blazing Griffin, 505 Games and Mediatonic.

Proceeds from the Bundle will go towards providing Mental Health training, supporting future initiatives from Safe In Our World, and extending the charity’s Level Up Mental Health Programme, which seeks to challenge all companies within the video games industry to unite and commit to positive change, ensuring safe and supporting work environments in regards to employees mental health, and eliminating the stigma surrounding those living with mental health conditions.

Without our partners, this simply wouldn’t have been possible. Together, we are Safe In Our World.

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Safer Together: Mental Health Month Fundraiser & Save The Dates

Safer Together is around the corner, so here is some useful infomation about what we’re up to for Mental Health Month.

ABOUT SAFER TOGETHER

This Mental Health Month we’re encouraging everyone to talk. Whether it’s to a friend, colleague, or a professional, talking is the first step to getting support, and we believe we’re safer together. 

We launched our first public Discord server: Safer Together, with the purpose of providing a public platform for gamers and industry folk to connect, find players for multiplayer games, discuss games, and be a safe community for all to talk or find resources. 

The Safer Together Fundraiser is looking to raise money for our future initiatives, invest in the evolution of the charity and will allow us to continue in our mission.

We are aiming to eliminate stigma surrounding mental health within the video games industry and its communities, so that every player and employee feels safe to reach out for help. 

The fundraiser will span the whole month of May, with Safe In Our World All-Star Community streams every day from the 1st – 7th May.


USEFUL LINKS & HEADLINES

Imposter Syndrome Panel in partnership with Ukie: On the 29th April at 4pm BST, we will be chatting with a wonderful panel about imposter syndrome and the effect it has on our mental health across the games industry. Tickets are *free* and you can grab one here.

Now available to watch here

Fundraiser Page:

Whether you’re looking to donate, support others or fundraise yourself – the fundraising page is where all the action will be across May.

For those fundraising for us, we’ve created some pretty fancy Safe In Our World limited edition merchandise that you’ll be sent if you hit fundraising milestones, including a 2021 #SaferTogether Pin Badge, Safe In Our World facemask/bandana and Safe In Our World Resuable Coffee Cup!


Safe In Our World Community Streams: Play With Safe

For the first week of May, we’ll be celebrating our community, and the power of social games, by having 7 days of Safe In Our World Streams! Kicking things off on Saturday 1st May with a custom lobby of Fall Guys hosted by Hannah Rutherford, followed by Mariokart chaos on Sunday with Gamebyte over on their Facebook page.

Monday is going to be back to Gamebyte for a wholesome stream on Animal Crossing Islands, and it’s to No Man’s Sky on Tuesday with our friends at Wired Productions.

Curve Digital and friends will be hosting a Human Fall Flat stream on Wednesday over on their Steam page, and we’ll be building what makes us happy in Minecraft on Thursday.

Finally, to tie up the week, Hannah will be hosting Among Us with the Safe In Our World community, which you will not want to miss!


For the remainder of May we’ll be looking to share and continue to spread the message that we are #SaferTogether and will continue to rally for mental health to be normalised within general discussion.

There will be giveaways, there will be freebies, and there will be multiplayer mischief.

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Safer Together: May Fundraiser 2021

We’re delighted to announce our Safer Together Fundraiser which will take place in May for Mental Health Month.

This Mental Health Month we’re encouraging everyone to talk. Whether it’s to a friend, colleague, or a professional, talking is the first step to getting support, and we believe we’re safer together. 

With that in mind, this March, we launched our first public Discord server: Safer Together, with the purpose of providing a public platform for gamers and industry folk to connect, find players for multiplayer games, discuss games, and be a safe community for all to talk or find resources. 

The Safer Together Fundraiser is looking to raise money for our future initiatives and continuing in our mission to eliminate stigma surrounding mental health within the video games industry and its communities, so that every player and employee feels safe to reach out for help. 

The fundraiser will span the whole month of May, with Safe In Our World All-Star Community streams every day from the 1st – 7th May.


Tiltify Campaign

We’ve now set up the event on Tiltify

If you’re looking to support us throughout the fundraiser and wish to register your own (solo or team) campaign to contribute to the event total, please follow this link to register with the event. 


Support

We’ve curated a list of ways that you could support us:

  • Donations – We are hugely appreciative of any support within the fundraiser itself. 
  • Fundraising – Within the Tiltify Campaign, you can register to create a fundraiser to contribute to main total, whether as part of a team or a solo campaign to support #SaferTogether – whether you’re a streamer, an athlete or anything in between, the opportunities are endless, and we appreciate every single one of you.  
  • Visibility – Any support in boosting our communications around the fundraiser would be greatly appreciated through social media platforms. 

Thank you all so much for the continued support, we’re excited to launch this fundraiser alongside our Discord, and be able to encourage more people to talk. 

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Safe In Our World Announces Community Manager’s Mental Health Training courses funded by Jingle Jam 2020

Registration for initial course placements are now open: bit.ly/SIOWcmt

 

London, February 10 2021. Safe In Our World (www.safeinourworld.com) today announced that its upcoming Community Management Mental Health Training Programme is now open for sign-ups. Launching later this year, the programme has been funded entirely by the community of Jingle Jam 2020 and sees the charity team up with Mind Fitness Training to create bespoke Safe In Our World accredited courses.

Safe In Our World wishes to extend its thanks to all those involved with Jingle Jam 2020, including the tens of thousands of community members that donated to enable the charity to create and deliver this vital training.

Designed to empower community managers, or anyone with a consumer facing role within the videogames industry, with knowledge, insight and best practice guidelines, this bespoke Safe In Our World programme will deliver beyond our original goal of providing courses for to up to 50 community managers, with the charity hoping to quadruple this figure.

“We were truly humbled by the support of the Jingle Jam community, and we owe a huge debt of gratitude to each and every one of them, as well as the organisers of Jingle Jam” said Kim Parker-Adcock, Deputy Chair, Safe In Our World. She continued, “This will be the first major initiative the charity will deliver in 2021, with many more to be announced. This course will empower those that talk directly to their communities with vital knowledge, guidelines and advice.”

“We were so pleased to have Safe In Our World as part of the Jingle Jam 2020 lineup of charity projects and our community felt the same,” said Lewis Brindley, co-founder of Jingle Jam. “This Mental Health Training Programme will provide much-needed support to those in the games industry who need it, we can’t wait to see it develop over the year.”

The Safe In Our World two-stage course includes both general mental health awareness and best practice. The programme will also include unique learning elements designed specifically for video games community managers, or those in a consumer facing role. With the aim to empower attendees with the knowledge and tools to deliver positive messaging, insights and actions, the course will offer a diverse skill set upon completion.

Registration is open now, and those interested should declare their interest, as Safe In Our World expects this free course to be highly subscribed. To register, please visit: bit.ly/SIOWcmt

The Safe In Our World mission remains; unite the industry to remove the stigma around mental health, within the industry and beyond, and to affect positive change for the better. For those interested in joining the Level Up Mental Health campaign, visit the Safe In Our World website for more information.

 

For more information, and to download press assets, please visit:
Safe In Our World bit.ly/SafeMedia

For press enquires please email press@safeinourworld.org

 

About Safe In Our World
Safe In Our World is a registered charity in England and Wales no. 1183344. A team of seasoned gaming veterans passionate about mental health brainstormed for over two years over ways they could make a difference. Launched on World Mental Health Day on October 10th, 2019, its aims are to raise awareness of mental health issues within the video games industry, and to provide resources, signpost help, and to drive change for everyone connected with the industry, for developers, publishers and service provides, to content creators and players. Its initial mission is to create an online destination where people can seek help, gain access to resources and information, and discover stories from real people within and surrounding the games industry, with more detailed policies available via the website. Safe In Our World is a worldwide hub accessible for anyone in need.

 

About the Jingle Jam

The Jingle Jam is the world’s biggest games charity event, taking place every year. Since its inception in 2011 the Jingle Jam has raised over $20 million, all for charitable projects across the world.

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SafeMentaliTee

Over the 20th – 22nd November, Seven Squared launched a campaign in support of Safe In Our World, called SafeMentaliTee.

Across the weekend, gamers came together to share the positive impacts that video games have had on their mental health. Stories were shared through social media posts, videos, or streams across the duration of the event, to celebrate gaming in a positive light and how it can support mental health as a whole.

The weekend raised over £2,000 for Safe In Our World, through donations and t-shirt sales, which is just amazing. Below are some of the inspiring stories that have been spoken about over the weekend, in the effort of encouraging more conversation around mental health.


“For as long as I can remember, mental health issues have been a part of my life. It’s a challenge to get an accurate diagnosis unless you fit a particular box, and at 29 years old I have finally been diagnosed with Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD) (and chasing ADD). The escapism provided by videogames can relieve some of that need to ‘escape’ in more destructive ways. It built friendships and gave me a community of people that I shared a major part of my life in common with, where I struggled with that in my local community. It gives many people their ‘tribe’ – this is very true of streaming too. During lockdown, streaming videogames has helped us because it nurtures a social life, creates and sets challenges, goals to focus on, and we’ve been able to support so many causes (like this one!). Video games have made me laugh, cry, fall in love, be in awe, reconsider, empathise, feel better about myself, feel clever, make hard choices, gain skills, reconnect and most of all – made me who I am.”

Scumm & Villainy


“I’ve found recently I’m playing more video games than ever, they allow me to engage with fellow gamers & talk about the 

things we enjoy/how I’m feeling, on a safe platform. For me personally, I find that video games are a great form of escapism, especially in these stressful times of uncertainty.”

~ Ant Stream Arcade


“Gaming can be a force for good, transport you somewhere different and make you feel good about yourself. When I was young during my birth something went wrong and it ripped apart my upper arm, it never properly healed, because of this I missed out on a lot and got quite a lot of abuse for this, it emotionally and mentally affected me as I got older, it was challenging. I was brought up on a musical mindset from my mother and ended up going into a more computer game direction. When I felt low from school or any of life’s tough moments I’d distance myself and listen to music and play video games which cemented all of my love in everything and provided the escape I needed.”

~ Bean Hed


“Mental health is more important than ever and games have personally helped me through the years.”

~ UKNESBoy


“This weekend I supported the Squared Seven #SAFEMentaliTEE campaign for mental health and the positive effects games have had for people – they’ve certainly helped me!”

~ Kim Justice


GAMING SAVED MY LIFE…IT PROBABLY SAVED SOMEONE ELSES TOO!!! Games were my escape, they were the one place I could be in control, where I couldn’t be hurt and all of life’s problems faded away. I could come home from school and put on my Spectrum or eventually my MegaDrive and shut out the world around me. I remember loading up Head Over Heels, Seymour Goes to Hollywood, Operation Wolf, Treasure Island Dizzy, 180 Darts and more.

~ Mental Health Gaming


“Sometimes it’s about being a part of something bigger, that lets you open up and be honest with yourself. Having a community of people around you who aren’t afraid to discuss difficult topics with you is so important because it’s so easy to internalise these things and suffer because of it.”

~ Rosie Taylor


“For me, video games have actually been a lifesaver as on numerous occasions I have had issues with my own mental health, especially during the pandemic. Mental health is not something to be brushed under the carpet! It’s a serious issue and video games do help. Stop this stigma! Even without the pandemic, individuals suffer from their mental health and it can affect anyone. There have been times where I’ve felt lost, alone and unable to cope. It’s horrible to feel like you are also a burden to others. Your mental health is important! #SAFEMentaliTEE. Do not feel like you are wasting people’s time if you are suffering. You have every right to ask for help and it doesn’t make you weak. Never feel like you are not worth it. And if you are worried about someone, check in on them – they will appreciate it”

~ Chazie


“A lot of people don’t know my struggle but video games have helped a lot. I was never great in school when young, never cared for it. I’d get involved, but the older I got I started getting sick when I’d enter the place. I had no idea why, and things were getting out of control. I’d go to the nurse, I’d call my parents and say I’d need to go home and as soon as I left I was perfectly fine. I would go home play games, do whatever and I felt fine. People around me kept thinking I was making it up, I got frustrated, I didn’t understand, I got depressed, I couldn’t participate in things I loved with friends and I got angry as-well. I lost friends, respect of my family, it felt like everything was falling apart, I was so angry I’d sadly take it out on others. I turned to video games and the more I played the better I felt, I started making friends again, ones I still have today and became part of communities, it saved me and became a huge part of my life, I then met my partner Jambo through Twitch gaming and life couldn’t be better. Gaming can do so much for people.”

~ Anthony

 

 

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Screamapalooza

From the 19th – 25th October, Screamapalooza, a charity stream run by Rage Club / Screamer Streamer raised an incredible £34,700 for Safe In Our World.

The two teams joined forces for a week of Halloween themed streams, including spooky games, cosplay, pumpkin carving, and the big finale: The Dark Souls Tournament.

Over the week, everyone at Safe In Our World was blown away by the generosity of the communities, both in donations and time, and we’re incredibly grateful for the support that was shown throughout the event. Almost 40 streamers took part during the week, some with multiple streams!

We would like to thank everyone who got involved with Screamapalooza – whether you were a streamer, a viewer, someone setting up behind the scenes, or someone who donated – everyone contributed to this amazing week, and it is going to make a huge difference to the support we can give here at Safe In Our World.

Right now, Safe In Our World has various projects underway to support mental health awareness within the video games industry and beyond. The money raised by the stream teams will contribute to creating more training opportunities, improve resources for support across the world, and support future initiatives to come.

The kindness and generosity of the gaming community will never cease to amaze us.

Thank you.

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Safe In Our World Joins The Jingle Jam 2020

Safe In Our World are happy to announce that we will be a part of the Jingle Jam 2020.

From the 1st to 14th December, the Jingle Jam will see streamers across the globe raise funds for 12 causes via The Jingle Jam 2020 Games Bundle. More details will be announced soon about the 40+ games and in-game items that will be available!

We will be joining 11 other wonderful charity projects chosen to be part of #JingleJam2020 :

Access Sport

British Games Institute

Call of Duty Endowment

ILGA

Mental Health Foundation

One25

Open Bionics

Special Effect

The Grand Appeal

War Child

and Whales.org


Safe In Our World Project:

The money raised by the Jingle Jam will fund the creation of Community Managers courses, which we will deliver free of charge to the video games community and industry. We must ensure that we equip those who interact directly with gamers, with the knowledge to be able to support their communities through awareness and mental health first aid. Community Managers are the frontline who interact with gamers regularly, and must be able to offer and signpost the appropriate support and awareness around mental health.

We would like to thank everyone involved in putting this together, and we’re excited to see the event kick off in December.

Keep up to date with all things Jingle Jam on Twitter.

Follow the official Jingle Jam livestreams in December.

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30 Games in 30 days: Thank you Charlie

My eldest son’s name is Charlie, he is eight years old, and I’m so proud of him.

Charlie has known about Safe in our World since we first began discussing putting this together, before it was even a registered charity. He’s been waiting such a long time to do something to raise money, because I’ve always been open with him about why I’m involved with the charity. I’ve read him my story and explained it so he understands.

The reason Safe in our World is so important to me, is because Charlie has several symptoms that are recognisable. Myself and his Mum have been going through the process of trying to get a diagnosis for Charlie for nearly four years, and he’s acutely aware of that fact. He is as desperate as we are to get some help for him, and for us as parents. Video games are where he is happiest. In these many worlds, he finds solace, focus and direction, and recently, he’s discovered he can play with his friends and talk to them, even when they’re not there with him.

Charlie has challenged himself to play games that aren’t his favourites. He has types of games he wants to play all the time; train games, bus games and driving games. To have Charlie agree and ask to play these different games each day has helped him grow. He’s discovered new games and genres that he wouldn’t think to consider.

In his 30 days, Charlie has raised £426, which is a phenomenal amount of money for an Eight-year-old to raise. Charlie said, “Oh my gosh.” when I told him how much he’d raised. And then I told him the amazing Curve Digital promised to match what he’d raised to-date. Charlie has been over the moon ever since, and with some last minute donations, the total now stands at £983.25 including gift aid. I have a feeling we may end up making this a yearly thing, Next year, his brother Bradley wants to get involved.

As a charity, we’d like to thank everyone who has donated to the cause, and supported Charlie’s fundraising efforts. Every like, retweet and share has been heart-warming. Charlie wanted to say something to you all personally:

“Thank you for donating. I’ve loved trying out everyone’s games. My favourites were Human Fall Flat, Lego City Undercover, Doritos Crash Course and Avicii Invector.”


Charlie read through this story and was happy for it be posted online.

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