I volunteered at a great event this weekend – the “Wii Build Event”. About 130 people showed up at a local church to unpackage, assemble, and organize 70 Wii stations–each going into a room at the Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital in Palo Alto, CA and at the children’s wing at the UCSF hospital in San Francisco.
The idea was inspired by my nephew, Matthew. He was a great kid (really, really was!) but was unfortunately diagnosed with Leukemia, and after a few tough years battling with cancer, he passed away at 9. (I still miss him.)
My cousin Gigi, and her husband Ely set up the Matthew Tsern Foundation shortly after, to help families of kids with cancer. And with the support of KidsSTRONG, they managed to get all of these Wii stations! Matthew had a Wii station in his hospital room and they felt all kids with cancer should have one too – as a way to forget about their pain. And because the kids can’t leave their room, all the Wii stations will be set up on the same network so they can still interact with each other. Gigi and Ely are absolutely incredible – some of the most loving and dedicated people I know.
Video of the event »
Photos from event »
The event was a great success, and I had a lot of fun while I was there. Here are some of the photos from the event.
Here’s an example of a finished product from the event. These customized Wii lockboxes each hold one Wii station with accessories.
Inside of one of the lockboxes.
70 empty Wii boxes!
Hundreds of games were donated by EA and LucasArts. The CDs had to be taken out of the boxes and…
…put in these spools. I’m assuming this will be put in a common area in the hospital.
My cousin Louis assembling the lock boxes. These were designed by his company, and the materials donated by two of their vendors.
Louis and Ely in the assembly line.
Mike in the Quality Assurance department.
A volunteer assembling a lockbox.
Volunteers unpacking and assembling.
Wii boxes empty and ready for recycling! Mike and I helped break these down.
And of course, there was a Wii station set up for kids to play with.
A crafts table was set up so kids could come to the event and help make cards for each of the Wii stations.
The craft tables also served as eating areas where volunteers could socialize.
Here are some of the cards the kids created. So creative!
The front of the card I designed.
The inside of the card Mike designed. Being a product designer, this was of course, in 3D. (“Wii hope you feel better!”)
I helped make this logo/sticker for the Matthew Tsern Foundation, as well as…
…make this sponsors poster. I knew being a designer would come in handy.
Leaflets commemorating kids who passed away from cancer. Their families were at the event.
Matthew was with us in spirit.
Me, Gigi, and Ely.