What is Extra Life?
Extra Life is a program of Children's Miracle Network Hospitals (CMN) where gamers register online for free, choose a CMN hospital, raise money, and then play games to "earn" that money. Think of it like a 5k for your thumbs.
Since 2012, gamers in Kern County have raised over $200,000 for the Lauren Small Children's Center (LSCC) at Bakersfield Memorial Hospital, the only CMN hospital in Kern County.
Most gamers play from home, alone or with a few friends. Many livestream their games over platforms like Twitch, YouTube or Facebook Live, and they give those that watch their stream a chance to donate online and help them raise funds.
The great thing about Extra Life is that you can...
- Play what you want. Video, board, card, tabletop, outdoor - you name it!
- Play when you want. Play one day or play off and on all year.
- Play as long as you want. Two hours or 24 or even more. There's no min or max.
- Play where you want. COVID makes that tough and most people play from home.
- Play with whomever you want. It might be a great chance to bond with family over games!
Extra Life is not a competition or a tournament. Skill is not a requirement of participation.
If you'd like to play games and heal kids, you can join our team at the link at the top of the page, or start your own team at www.extra-life.org.
Goals for 2021
#1: Recruit 1,000 gamers. We've had as many as 1,200+ before. Last year we had <150 and still managed to raise $29,500. That's our fourth biggest year ever. It's not just about getting a bunch of gamers. It's about getting the right gamers. We're looking for people who like to have fun but who will be serious about raising money for the Lauren Small Children's Center.
#2: Raise $50,000. That would be our biggest year ever. 1,000 gamers would only have to raise $50 each, and last year we had 12 people raise $1,000 or more. It's more than we've ever done but it's a reachable goal.
#3: Build our online presence. More social media. More regularly scheduled Twitch streams so we can promote them better.
Social Media and Contact Information
Extra Life Official Page (Go here to get more information about the Extra Life program)
Extra Life Team Bakersfield page for recruiting (Go here to join our team)
Snapchat: ExtraLifeBako (no link, in app only)
Tik-Tok: ExtraLifeBakersfield (no link, in app only)
Discord: ExtraLifeBakersfield (no link, in app only)
How To Sign Up
Decide on one of these four options. You can do any of these at www.extra-life.org.
- Register as a member of our team. Go to the link and choose "Join a Team", then search for Team Bakersfield.
- Register as a member of another team. Go to the link and choose "Join a Team", then search for the team's name.
- Register and create your own team. Go to the link and choose "Create a team."
- Register as an individual and not part of a team. Go to the link and choose "Individual."
Choose "CA-Lauren Small Children's Center" as the hospital you'll support. That keeps any money raised here in Kern County to help treat Kern County kids.
Set a personal goal. It has to be at least $100 but it's just a goal, not a commitment. Pick something that would be a challenge but reachable. If you hit your goal quickly, you can increase it.
Hints for Success
It is free to register as "Classic." If you register as "Platinum" there is a $19 fee that does not go toward your fundraising but allows you to win official Extra Life items. Start as Classic and upgrade to Platinum later once you raise enough to know you earned goodies.
You can sign up your kids using your own email so all communication goes through you.
Milestones and incentives are fun but not mandatory, and you can add them later if you want. They're fun ways to hit little mini-goals on your way to your big goal.
Customize your page (and team page if you made one). Let people know why you're participating and why you need their help.
If you use Facebook, create a Facebook Fundraiser from your Extra Life fundraising page. Anything donated through Facebook will go 100% to your Extra Life campaign.
Share info about your Extra Life participation on social media regularly. People will donate but not if they don't know you're doing it.
Support your own effort. Even $5 or $10 per month makes a big difference by the end of the year.
Even if you raise money all year, pick a focus day to be your "game day" and share it with people to rally their support.