NOTE: THIS POST HAS BEEN UPDATED AS OF MARCH 27, WHICH IS NOW ONLY ONE WEEK AWAY!!!!
TWO WEEKS TODAY, LADIES AND GENTLEMEN.
What’s two weeks today? Well, I’m getting to that.
On April 3rd, which just happens to be around World Autism Awareness time, the company I work for is going to be kicking off a 24-hour Minecraft marathon in aid of two charities. It’s the fifth year that we’ve done it, although I’ve only been with the company about nine months so it’s my first time! It should be a lot of fun, and hopefully help a good cause while we’re at it.
So a bit of background: I work for a company called Brain in Hand, and basically we help people to become more independent through using a bit of technology. Our system is a personalised support kit, letting people work on their best coping strategies and then have access to them via a smartphone app, as well as being connected to their supporters. In essence, the people who benefit from what we do are people who might panic if they come up against a tricky situation and not know what to do; with Brain in Hand, they have access to advice in their own words so they feel empowered to overcome these problems. We work with people who are on the autistic spectrum, who have brain injuries, anxiety or learning disabilities, and they can accomplish some seriously amazing things.
But this isn’t a sales pitch, so I’ll leave it at that for now; let’s talk Minecraft and fundraising!
At 13.00 BST on Tuesday 3rd April we’ll kick off the event, and it’ll run until 13.00 BST on Wednesday 4th April. Some Brain in Hand staff are doing the whole 24 hours, with others dropping in – I’ll be doing 13.00 until 5.00 on Tuesday, then 8.00 until 13.00 on Wednesday. You should be able to watch a livestream of the whole thing at twitch.tv/braininhand, and there’ll be video highlights of the event a bit later. We’re encouraging people to watch and indeed to join in with us and play some Minecraft! Full details of how to do that are on this page of our website, but I’ll run through the basics:
To join, you need the Java edition of Minecraft, but it’s free to connect to our server, which you can do by opening your game, clicking “Multiplayer”, then choose “Add Server” and input “minecraft.braininhand.co.uk” as the Server Address. The aim of the game is for teams to build CASTLES that are as awesome as possible – you can register your own team beforehand, play solo, or join one of the teams captained by a Brain in Hand employee (including me!). We’ve got a forum for registering in advance if you want to join, or if you want to have a team, and that forum is here.
Basically the rules will be to build a castle (and village, if you like) with as many cool features as you possibly can – features mean points! There’ll also be judges awarding points for creativity, general awesomeness, that sort of thing. You can also just decide to forego the competition element entirely and head off to build whatever the heck you want. That’s cool too!
We now have a page set up to take donations for a really cool local charity called Positively Autistic, and we’ll also be shaking a bucket around our offices on the day. The team who wins the building competition will get to choose another charity (from a shortlist) to donate that bucket money to. Please do donate a couple of quid if you can, or if not then please just share the page details!
If you’re a Facebook event sort of person, please do sign up on the event page here.
EVERYBODY PLEASE do share this and all the information I’ve linked to. The aim is to have fun, celebrate technology’s power to bring people together (and the good in gaming, which we’re all chatting about lately) and to raise some money to help some cool people help some more cool people.