Tom Kirkman-Wood is 14 years old and has autism. On Friday 7th August, he will be doing a 12 hour Minecraft-Charity livestream to raise money for Ambitious about Autism, the leading national charity for children and young adults with autism. Tom’s Minecraft marathon will run from 8am to 8pm.
Tom said “I am very keen to spread the word about autism and love busting autism myths. I also happen to be a big Minecraft fan. The 12 hours is just 12 hours of playing in one go – I have done that kind of length before so I know that I can handle it however it is always hard. I will occasionally ask people in chat to set me goals and challenges”.
Minecraft has already been shown to be very popular for those with autism, because it is a game that never ends. One father has now created Autcraft, a closed online Minecraft community just for kids with autism.
According to Learning Works for Kids, “Minecraft provides a vibrant world in which creativity, exploration, and productivity occurs on the player’s terms. Particularly in the creative mode, Minecraft allows the player to have a great deal of control over their environment. Minecraft also rewards discovery in a way that does not prompt anxiety and fear. While many children with Autism crave routine and familiarity, Minecraft becomes a safe place to develop flexibility. They are able to explore an unknown world and face fears without giving up safety.”
Jolanta Lasota, CEO Ambitious about Autism said “We are always delighted when the young people we represent and support want to raise money for us. This fundraiser is a great example of the different ways that you can raise money. Whilst it is true that Minecraft is a particularly popular game for young people with autism, 12 hours is quite the commitment and we wish Tom all the best of luck with the marathon!”