Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) Update
Last May, our studio announced and released a ‘Days of Healing’ Pack in Sky, which invited players to purchase an in-app flower item to share their support to essential and frontline workers. A total of over $1 Million USD was generated, and thatgamecompany donated 100% of net proceeds to the medical humanitarian aid organization Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) – contributing *$719,138 towards the MSF COVID-19 Crisis Fund.
We were incredibly grateful for the passion and generosity of our Sky community, and humbled that our player base came together to support real life action to affect the world in a positive and meaningful way. Close to a year on, we are proud to share an update about how our fans’ generosity helped make MSF’s rapid response to the pandemic possible.
In over 70 countries, MSF teams quickly adapted to a world with COVID-19 and prepared their projects for this global threat — implementing infection prevention measures, reorganizing patient flow in hospitals, and training health care and nursing home staff. As the pandemic spread, MSF rapidly scaled up COVID-19 treatment capacity and focused on some of the hardest-hit areas, many in locations where they have never worked before.
From June to August 2020 alone, MSF ran over 250 projects with dedicated COVID-19 activities in 63 countries. MSF teams supported more than 600 health facilities to stem the spread of COVID-19 and train local staff, and directly treated COVID-19 patients in an additional 138 hospitals and treatment centers on five continents.
Today, the pandemic is far from over. MSF teams are continuing extensive programs to treat COVID-19 patients and stem the pandemic’s spread in Brazil, India, Iraq, Kenya, Malawi, and South Africa, to name a few. They also advocate for equitable global distribution of COVID-19 vaccines. For more information, please visit this page.
While battling COVID-19, MSF has safeguarded other lifesaving programs to ensure access to medical care for the millions of patients who rely on MSF for surgery, trauma care, and treatment for malnutrition and malaria. MSF teams are on the scene in Guinea to help stem a new Ebola outbreak, ensure that children continue to receive vaccinations for deadly diseases, that women and girls have access to reproductive health care, and that they can continue to reach victims of disasters, wherever they occur.
The unprecedented global health challenges of the past year have only reinforced MSF’s commitment to the principle the organization was founded on in 1971: that the fundamental right to medical care outweighs national boundaries—that people deserve to be cared for, wherever and whoever they are. As MSF commemorates their 50th anniversary this year, as both a company and as individuals, we here at thatgamecompany are so grateful to have been able to contribute to their efforts and thank you for joining us in this initiative.
Additionally, thatgamecompany is proud to be one of many video game companies who have supported efforts of the #PlayApartTogether initiative since last spring. The initiative sought to disseminate evidence-based health messages from WHO to help slow the spread of COVID-19. To promote these messages, hundreds of game industry leaders encouraged our vast network of users to follow the WHO's health guidelines-including on physical distancing, masks, hand and respiratory hygiene, how to keep rooms well ventilated and avoiding crowds.
Even though 2020 has been full of struggle and heartache for so many, it’s important to remember that we have the power to make a difference. We’re thankful to have had the opportunity to work on a game that continues to encourage compassion and generosity not only in Sky, but in the homes and communities of our players.
Looking to the rest of 2021 and beyond, we are excited to continue to support more non-profit initiatives (such as our new “Days of Nature” event) and look forward to seeing what we can all accomplish together!
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* While over $1 Million USD was pledged from our side towards the MSF COVID-19 Crisis Fund after the campaign, the total after Apple and Google deducted fees was $719,138.