Gaming consoles that were gifted to a number of local families by gaming retailer Go2Games and Palace for Life Foundation have been bringing people together and promoting inclusion during the Coronavirus lockdown, according to a Croydon-based care manager.
Palace for Life Foundation, the official charity of Crystal Palace FC, identified individuals and groups who would benefit from a console, either to give parents and carers some respite time, or to help isolated young people connect with friends and family. The consoles and games were donated and distributed by south London gaming business Go2Games.
Amanda Stewart who runs Havensent, a company supporting adults with learning disabilities and helping them access activities and short breaks, says the impact of the consoles has been enormous.
“This has been lifechanging for young people in these exceptional times. Not only have these consoles been very well received but they are items that are not always affordable and imagine the delight all of who received the gifts knowing that they had been chosen by their favourite football club and had not been forgotten.”
Amanda, who worked at Croydon Mencap for 11 years before setting up her own company, continued to say:
“All who received the gifts are so humbled by this gesture. Families can now all enjoy the consoles together which keeps everyone busy and enables communication, prevents isolation and encourages inclusion, not to forget learning a new skill whilst having to stay at home.”
Confusion, upset and anger were just some of the issues being faced by the people Amanda supports when being confined to their homes amidst the Coronavirus crisis. Many of those who received a console and games from Go2Games would typically have been attending weekly football sessions with Palace for Life.
“All of the young Adults who attend Havensent are really struggling to understand just why the implications of COVID-19 have prevented each of them to attend sessions of their beloved Crystal Palace, not seeing their coaches who know them so well and also friends that they have made from different settings across the borough.
“Palace for Life Foundation care about the people who attend their sessions and through Go2Games have now offered them a way of feeling included and keeping entertained at this difficult time.”
Go2Games Director Craig Constantinides added: “We believe collectively as a borough of people we are able to achieve more together. As a united front of positivity our business is built on the very foundation that is Croydon one of the most underrated yet undeniable melting pots of global culture.”
Palace for Life Foundation and Go2Games are now working together to provide consoles for hospitals across south London, helping to keep staff working tirelessly motivated and entertained.
Don't forget that at 12:00 BST today (Wednesday 22nd April) Wilfried Zaha will be getting his own bit of gaming in against Manchester City's Raheem Sterling - you can watch how our wing wizard fares against the England international live on Sky Sports' Twitch and YouTube channels.