Not all video games need to be mindless distractions, at least if SGN has anything to say about it. The Los Angeles social and mobile gaming studio is betting that not only can games be both fun and educational, but through recent strategics partnerships, charitable as well.
SGN, which is the latest venture of MySpace co-founders Chris DeWolfe, Colin Digiaro, and Aber Whitcomb, is launching a partnership with EarthEcho International, a youth-focused, environmental action non-profit founded by the grandson of Jacques-Yves Cousteau, Philippe Cousteau, Jr. Together, these two organizations will donate 100 percent of the proceeds from in-app purchases in SGN’s popular iOS game “Rescue Reef” to ocean conservation efforts.
The promotion will run from October 10 through 17, and during that time the app will be rebranded to include additional conservation-focused educational content. Rescue Reef is inspired by Kimberly Muller’s environmentally conscious children’s book “Last Night I Swam With A Mermaid”. EarthEcho targets elementary- through high school-aged youths, a demographic that makes up 50 percent of SGN’s audience, according to DeWolfe.
Cousteau recalls both his father’s and grandfather’s insatiable appetites for technology, and views this partnership as an opportunity to honor that alongside their commitment to conservation and sustainability. The SGN technology partnership will allow the charity to quickly reach a highly-engaged audience of across a wide range of ages and nationalities.
This partnership is the second of this nature for SGN, which previously integrated The Humane Society into its “Fluff Friends Rescue” game, resulting in both increased in-game engagement and thousands of dollars of donations, according to DeWolfe. SGN views its 80 million total iOS game installs as more than a profit center, but also a tool to broadcast charitable messages and deliver social impact.
“We’re convinced that making fun games and educating the world on important issues aren’t mutually exclusive,” says DeWolfe. “We plan to release two additional games by the end of the year that both entertain and empower our audience in support of charitable causes.”