Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Kiva Go Game For Good raises $1000 in London!

Kiva's most recent Go Game event in London was a huge success!  I spoke with Kieran Ball, a former Kiva Fellow, and here's what he had to say: 

"Come back! I love you! Will you marry me?!"  This is what I found myself shouting across a busy-yet-soberingly-quiet pub on a sunny Saturday afternoon in central London. The teary-eyed girl in the white wedding dress broke into a grin and skipped towards me through a sea of open-mouthed onlookers.

Thankfully, I hadn't just 'done a Ross', and even more thankfully, nor had I splashed out the extorionate amount of cash needed for a wedding in central London. I was in fact taking part in a Kiva fundraising event organised by The
Go Game, a San Francisco based innovator in technology-driven teambuilding games.

On Saturday August 15th over forty people gathered in an (almost) secret location near Oxford Circus to take part in the game. Described only as a "hi-tech treasure hunt", attendees were eager to find out what they'd got themselves into. We were rewarded with a hilarious, fun, and surreal afternoon chasing through the busy streets solving puzzles, completing photo and video missions, talking to total strangers, singing to pirates, and chasing cows, brides, and fairies.

The event culminated in side-splitting video and photo presentation of the highlights of each team's efforts. Notable pant-wetting moments included a frankly scary reconstruction of the evolution of man in a city park, the best/worst chat up line of the day ("Do you like my t-shirt? Yes. Do you know what it's made of? No. It's made of boyfriend material"), a business model based on carrying members of the public across the street for a small fee, too many people in a phone box, human speedbumps, and a mad cow galavanting around the streets.

A huge thanks to everyone that took part, and special thanks to Mei and Chris at
The Go Game for giving up their time and resources for free, and to the actors for forfeiting their dignity. Also thank you to Ahkun.org for shipping over some original Cambodian Kramas made by Kiva borrower Kakeda Sun to give out as prizes. A big apology to the man with the eyepatch who was unfortunate enough to be on the same street as our unidentified pirate actor.

The event raised $1000 for the
Kiva Fellows Program and generated some great publicity. If you missed it, don't fret, just make sure you come along next time!

Kieran Ball (former Kiva Fellow)