- 145 tons of trash was collected (Niantic Statistic Reference )
- 41 countries & 6 continents
- 17,000 players volunteered 41,000 hours
- Partnered with 46 NGOs
- 176 NGO hosted events & 300 player hosted events
With the Pokemon Go Earth Day Rewards having come to a close, I still can’t get over the fact that over 17,000 people participated in this event globally. On the 28th of April, Niantic announced that due to reaching double their original goal of 7000 participants for Earth Day, they are given the world in-game rewards including being able to find Shiny Diglette and Groudon in raid battles. A later figure was disclosed saying that
For me, this is the future. In my book “The Future of Charity – The Pokemon Generation” this is exactly the subject I speak of. The future of charity is not based on donations, the future of charity is based on the gamification of positive social and environmental action.
Let’s take the theme of this particular trash cleanup focus with Niantic and The Pokemon Company for Earth Day. People leave their trash on streets, beaches, parks and other public places. Then other people get together to clean it up. But this isn’t sustainable, the littering in general needs to stop. Our oceans are so polluted that animals like whales are washing up on shores with 20kg of trash in their stomach.
I feel responsible for the well-being of our planet. Not just as a co-founder of a non-profit, but as a human who’s home planet is slowly being more unlivable day by day. For those of you who don’t know, the Earth Day event by Niantic / The Pokemon Company was extended for almost the entire month of April, starting on the 13th. They say they did this because Earth day (the 22nd of April) fell on a Monday this year. This gave many non-profits a chance to have more room to participate in the case that they cannot commit during the weekend of the 22nd. Events continued all the way until the end of the Month.
Niantic and The Pokemon Company are definitely going in the right direction. The next step that I see is that these Earth Day events can be done on a monthly basis like the current Pokemon Go Community Day. They could continue using the same map and system for people to find Non-profits who are doing these events with Playmob and then measure the trash as they did for this event. Another possibility is that trainers can register via the game and then non-profits with a special account can verify their participation.
If rewards could be given out the same day, or the following day for participating cities, that could give other cities an incentive to get more involved. This year and the last, the participants earned the rewards for the entire world, but that also means that those who didn’t participate got rewarded for something they didn’t do and that’s not really satisfying. That’s like playing a game and then winning before you even start!
Keep in mind, this is only the beginning as this is only the second year of an Earth Day Event that Niantic / The Pokemon Company has done. I’m sure as time goes on that the process will become more streamlined and interesting for participants.
We must give them credit as well. They agreed for the first time to do their first post-earth day Trash Cleanup with our Non-Profit, Lovelstzy Association.
Now about doing our part, we will be doing another special trash cleanup event in partnership with Niantic / The Pokemon Company Today (May 9th) to coincide with the International Release of Pokemon: Detective Pikachu. If you’re in Zurich and want to participate, register here:
The event is currently being sponsored by the city of Zurich with Trash Bags, Haus Hiltl where volunteers will receive a special discount during the event and Parking Zurich AG for allowing us to park so we can load the filled trash bags for transport.
Jason Paige the original Singer for The Pokemon Theme Song with Ylecas
Starting today, over this month, in partnership with Swiss Integ, we will be interviewing volunteers to shed light on the reason why people litter and reveal possible solutions to the problem. If you’re interested in being interviewed or to be part of an upcoming Lip Sync Challenge for an environmental music video with The Original Pokemon Theme Song, email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
If you’re a reader and would like to see more charity events on a monthly basis, raise some noise on Twitter to @Nianticlabs. They are listening as it took fans to make some noise for Niantic to make a Harry Potter version of Pokemon Go in 2016. Ok, it may have taken them a few years, but they are finally rolling out Wizards Unite later this year with an even more dynamic real-time action system using the same Augmented reality technology. Again, make some noise, they are listening…