Gamers Without Borders attracted over 300,000 participants from 82 countries to play together on tournaments across the most popular titles in gaming
Seven-week event also welcomed world’s elite-level gamers, who competed to win shares of the series’ US$10m prize fund for coronavirus charities including UNICEF, Direct Relief and Gavi, making GWB the biggest esports charity event ever
Charities offer their thanks to the series, which SAFEIS hint will return again
June 15th: Held over seven-weeks, US$10million COVID-19 esports series Gamers Without Borders became the biggest ever event of its kind when it united more than 300,000 gamers from 82 countries – including the world’s best elite players and a host of superstars from sports and entertainment – on many of the most popular online multi-platform titles, including Fortnite, FIFA20 and Call of Duty.
Between them, quarantined gamers played over 200,000 competitive matches, while GWB’s charity prize fund International Elite tournaments drew a global streaming audience of 15 million people – and saw US$10million donated to seven organizations leading the world’s fight against the spread of coronavirus.
This was organizer SAFEIS’ – the Saudi Arabian Federation for Electronic and Intellectual Sports – biggest event to date and to HRH Prince Faisal bin Bandar bin Sultan, the chairman of SAFEIS, said: “Gamers Without Borders was so special in how it brought together millions of gamers across geographies with two shared passions: one for gaming, and one for contributing to a truly global issue. We united a genuine community to support in what continues to be real crisis.
“It was a great honour to handover US$10million to our seven partner charities, to bring so many gamers together, and to be a force for positivity amid these turbulent times. We now look forward to growing our standing within global gaming even more going forward.”
Gamers Without Borders saw US$10million donated to seven global charities tackling COVID-19: Gavi, UNICEF, Direct Relief, International Medical Corps, King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center (KSRELIEF), Norwegian Refugee Council and the International Telecommunications Union.
Gary Stahl is head of partnerships at UNICEF. He explained exactly how the US$3.95million the charity received from the tournament will be used to help in the battle against coronavirus.
He said: “We’re really excited to have been working with Gamers Without Borders. This young age group – where the gamers are – is a new demographic for us, so we’re really happy that we’ve been able to collaborate.
“What we’re doing right now is buying massive amounts of protective gear and equipment, and we’re working with countries around the world to make sure their healthcare staff actually have that protective gear so they don’t get sick and can continue to treat everyone.
“We’re working to make sure children who depend on school lunches have access to school lunches despite not having access to school. We’re working to make sure routine vaccination continues, because in some countries routine vaccinations have stopped, so we could see as many as 6,000 children a day start dying from preventable causes because regular healthcare system are on a pause while we deal with COVID.”
Olly Cann is Director of Communications at Gavi. He said: “Thanks to the gaming community for this remarkable initiative – we’re so grateful because every little helps. Every dollar makes a real impact on a child somewhere around the world.
“We are overwhelmed and overjoyed by such a phenomenal response. To have people aware of what we do is really heartening. There’s a huge psychological impact on our moral as an organization. It’s great that the gaming community knows about us and it really lifts us to know that there’s people out there cheering us on.”
The Gamers Without Borders International Elite tournaments were supported throughout by the world’s largest esports company, ESL. They saw the world’s best gamers from 56 different countries take part, and also hosted superstar names including Dele Alli, Paulo Dybala, Trent Alexander-Arnold, João Félix, Andre Silva, Liam Payne and Snoop Dogg.
"The great success of such a diverse tournament series shows once more the power of gaming" says David Neichel, Co-CEO at ESL. "We have been on board to set up the project as technical partner completely remote from day one and are overwhelmed how great it has been received by the community, players and celebrities."
Keep up to date with all the news surrounding the future of Gamers Without Borders by following the event’s social channels:
- Twitter / Instagram (English): @GWBPS
- YouTube: Gamers Without Borders: @GWPBS
- Facebook: Gamers Without Borders: @GWBPS
About Gamers Without Borders
Gamers Without Borders is a series of unrivalled online esports elite and mass tournaments connecting and uniting the world of gaming in the fight against Covid-19. In an unprecedented worldwide event, gamers will compete for a $10 million prize pool, all of which will be donated by the winning players and their teams to charities and organizations. Additionally, all sponsorship revenues will also be donated to the same list.
Taking place between April 24th and June 7th, the event invites the world’s best esports athletes to compete across major gaming titles broadcasted live to a global audience. Other weekly mass tournaments are open to gamers across the world for a chance to qualify to play among the elite, in addition to mini tournaments and one-off games throughout the seven-week period.