2019 marks the fifth year Kinda Funny has participated in Extra Life and the first year the organization has broken the elusive $100,000 USD barrier! The fan-centered company began in 2015 after its four founders left IGN and began an incredibly popular podcasting and gaming network. Members of their community became known as "best friends," a collection of people who fostered their fandom and connected respectfully with one another. One of the best friends, Eric Thompson, created Team Kinda Funny to bring the community, and eventually the full organization, into the effort to help kids across the US and Canada.
That first year, Team Kinda Funny was able to more than double their initial goal of $25,000 USD to raise over $50,000 USD for the kids! Since then, Team Kinda Funny has made a habit of breaking through expectations. The team has now raised well over $400,000 USD for kids across North America since they got their start! That's the kind of achievement that truly touches countless lives and helps more children than we can wrap our heads around. The way the team has come together over the years was compiled into an almost hour-long documentary about Kinda Funny and its wonderful community of best friends.
Donations were raised via streaming on Game Day and extra efforts like holding shirt design contests and putting those designs up for sale. This year's design was created by Cameron Kennedy, host of Important Business. You can grab the shirt for a limited time, with all profits from the shirt going to Extra Life and helping Kinda Funny set their fundraising bar even higher for next year!
Team Kinda Funny's fundraising page really says it all:
Everyday, we hear your stories about how video games better your life; how they help you cope with stress and give you a place to escape the world around you. Some of you have shared how video games have helped you through tough times, including times of serious illness. We know how important gaming is to you, and we’re a part of Extra Life because it’s an opportunity for us, as a gaming community, and as a community of best friends, to make a real change in the lives of sick children.
The bulk of 2019's donations that contributed toward Team Kinda Funny's smashing success went to three hospitals: UCSF Benioff Children's Hospitals in Oakland, California, Sanford Children's in Fargo, North Dakota, and Maria Fareri Children's Hospital in Valhalla, New York. The opportunities Team Kinda Funny has made possible in those locations and numerous other places across the continent can't be overstated.
We want to say thank you to the wonderful people who have come together over the past five years to make some good in the world, both the best friends in Kinda Funny's community, the personalities on screen or on mic during streams, and the people working hard behind the scenes to make it all happen. You're incredible and we can't wait to see all of the amazing things you're going to do for the community and the world.
It's never too late to sign up for Extra Life to help sick and injured kids in hospitals around the US and Canada by playing games! Donations for 2019 are accepted year-round!