Whether you’re a gaming boss, a newbie or looking to recreate a much loved nostalgic experience with friends, a gaming marathon can be a great way to raise funds for Amnesty’s work and defend human rights around the world.

Here you’ll find everything you need to plan and deliver your gaming marathon, from setting up the event, to hints and tips on how to reach your fundraising goal.

We've got plenty of materials to help you promote your event. So if you want any stickers, badges, t-shirts or posters, please get in touch.

1. Decide on the marathon length and fundraising target

So, the big question. How long shall your marathon be? We’ve put together a list of suggested timings and appropriate fundraising asks for each, but it is just a suggestion, and can be amended as you see fit. It is a good idea to decide on this first though, as all other planning and preparation will depend on this decision. Choose wisely!
  • Easy: 1 – 8 hours gaming, suggested sponsorship target £100

  • Medium: 8 – 16 hours gaming, suggested sponsorship target £250

  • Hard: 16 – 24 hours gaming, suggested sponsorship target £500

2. Choosing your team

We would suggest taking on this challenge with friends or family, particularly if you’re planning on a lengthy gaming marathon. Staying awake for prolonged periods of time does come with its own risks, and we would strongly recommend to take regular breaks. Your health and wellbeing has to be priority! 
 
During those rest periods you’ll need someone else to take the reins/controller/mouse to keep the game going. Also, having other people with you means they can handle all of the live promotion, for example tweeting or putting up regular Facebook posts. They can reply to any messages you get as well as thank donors in real time. Plus, the more people involved and there with you, the more fun it will be!

3. Plan which games to play

This can be done based on actual game timings or game genre. For example (and this set up would work well if you’re planning to broadcast your marathon) if you know game A lasts roughly 12 hours, game B lasts 2 hours and game C lasts 8 hours, then you’ve got yourself three games you could play to completion, plus a couple of hours to be used for introductions, quick chats about Amnesty’s work with your online audience and thanking donors. You could choose to play only one game for the duration if you think there’s enough gameplay potential to keep it interesting (this would work well with open world games, for example). 
 
The possibilities are endless and entirely up to you, but having a rough plan is a good idea as it keeps your marathon structured and helps create an experience which will be easier to promote to friends and family.

4. Promoting your event 

After creating your schedule, think about whether or not you want to broadcast your marathon, using services like Twitch,Ustream or Youtube. This is a great way to promote and share what you’re doing and means your online audience will be able to live stream your event and interact throughout. That kind of interaction can help generate more donations and adds another layer of entertainment to your marathon. You can also engage your viewers in what you’re doing and the reasons why, talk about Amnesty’s work and even hold competitions they can take part in to win Amnesty goodies.
 
Broadcasting isn’t essential, and if you want to just keep your friends and family up to date via Twitter or Facebook without streaming then that’s absolutely fine too. Again, it comes down to preference and what you’re most comfortable with, but either way, do make sure people know what you’re doing and how they can get involved and donate.

5. Fundraising

Once you’ve decided on all the above, make sure to include your plans on your JustGiving or Virgin Money Giving fundraising page (UK sponsorship websites that can be accessed from anywhere in the world). This is where your sponsors will come to make their donation, so make sure you’ve personalised it with photos, why you’re holding a gaming marathon, the itinerary, and a link to your Twitch,Ustream or Youtube page if you’re broadcasting. Make sure you plug your fundraising page in the weeks building up to your marathon, and during the event as well. People will need to see your page at least three times before they part with their cash, so schedule in Facebook posts and tweets in the build up to your marathon, counting down to the big day and reminding people to donate!
 
It’s a good idea to have some funds already collected before the day of the marathon to get the ball rolling. 
 
(Top tip: Approach those who are likely to be most generous first, i.e. parents, siblings, grandparents. That way, when people see larger donations on your fundraising page, they’ll feel more inclined to dig a bit deeper!)
 

6.Marathon Day

 
On the day of your gaming marathon, make sure you eat well and stock up on supplies to see you through the marathon. It’s recommended to snack on things like apples, carrots and even cereals. Eating healthy foods will still give you the energy you need to get you through without harming your body in the process! Make sure to drink plenty of water as well and avoid high caffeinated soft drinks! 
It’s highly recommended to take regular breaks throughout your marathon, and maybe even sleep if you’re particularly tired (but no more than 20mins as you may end up feeling even worse). 
 
Throughout your marathon, make sure you’re keeping your online followers updated on progress, both in terms of the games and the fundraising. If you’re not broadcasting your event, there are still a number of ways you can share images or videos of your gameplay if you want to. Again, the more you can interact with your peers the more buzz it will create and the more likely you’ll smash your fundraising target. 
 
Most of all though, enjoy! You’re doing something amazing. The funds you’ll be raising will be put towards Amnesty’s vital human rights work around the world, so not only will you be fighting the bad guys virtually, you’ll be doing it in real life as well!

Get in touch

If you have any questions or need any help, please drop us an email or give us a call:
 
Phone: 020 7033 1651