Throughout the entire year, YouTubers from every corner of the search bar take part in various charitable pursuits and fundraising events. And with fans across the globe, their potential to become inspirational philanthropists is practically undeniable.
However one event is proving to have record-breaking donations within the first seven days of it’s debut on December 1st: The YogsCast Jingle Jam 2015.
Lewis Brindley and Simon Lane, the duo behind one of the most successful gaming channels on the entire web, launched their 2015 Jingle Jam live streams by raising over $300k in just a week. And they still have 23 days of their challenge to go.
Starting in 2014, the YogsCast team work in partnership with the ‘pay what you want’ digital game distributor, Humble Bundle to sell extraordinary game bundles at low cost in the name of charitable causes. So how does it work?
Over the course of 30 days, Lewis and Simon will play a collection of games over both Twitch and YouTube with various friends and web celebrities joining them, ranging from TheRPGMinx up to industry leaders at Eurogamer. Every single game they play will be available to purchase in a bundle at a completely customisable price. The more you donate, the more games you unlock and vice versa.
At the time of writing, YogsCast have officially raised $300,881, with over 12,285 bundles having been purchased. Crazy, right? The full Jingle Jam schedule can be seen on the YogsCast subReddit, as well as a list of their chosen charities, including game focused charities such as GamesAid and SpecialEffect.
So whilst we stay tuned to their daily live streams and donate increasingly more and more money, it’s apt to remember other YouTubers that dedicate themselves to charitable causes. Below we’ll take a look at some of the most successful ventures to date.
John & Hank Green – Project For Awesome.
Everyone’s favourite digital nerds know exactly what their fans want. As well as launching a bunch of huge projects such as VidCon, the VlogBrothers earliest (and possibly greatest) work kicked off in 2007 with their massive non-profit event, Project For Awesome.
The fundraising works like this: on a selected weekend of the year (11th-12th of December for 2015), you need to submit a video to P4A explaining why you support certain charities, spend the weekend engaging with the community and supporting other people’s videos, donate money to the project via IndieGoGo, and… well Hank explains it way better than we can.
All we need to tell you is that in 2014 alone, Nerdfighteria collectively raised $1.2 million for both Save The Children and Partners In Health. We’re so proud of the Greens!
Tyler Oakley – The Trevor Project.
As we’ve previously mentioned on Unicorns before, Tyler Oakley is a precious cinnamon roll and is literally too pure for this world. He’s so pure in fact, that every single year when his birthday comes around, he asks his fans not to spend their money on gifts but to consider something more charitable…
Starting in 2013, Tyler decided to encourage fans to donate their money to his favourite charity, The Trevor Project, to help them in the fight against LGBT youth suicide. His efforts paid off and he made a substantial donation of $29,000.
However, in 2015, Tyler’s fans did the unthinkable and was able to smash previous years by raising a whopping $532,224 for Trevor in just a month! A truly life-changing sum of money.
PewDiePie – Charity: Water.
In the video above we see a different side of PewDiePie. Instead of addressing the camera with his usual flails and screams of “PEWWWDDIIEEEPIIEEE”, we meet cool and collected Mr Kjellberg on a mission to unite his 10 million bros to do something significant in the world.
Altogether, the Bros raised $446,462 for Charity: Water, which was set up to help give people in third world countries a healthier supply of drinking water regardless of where they lived. This surprisingly had a positive knock-on effect for mainstream media. All of a sudden Felix wasn’t just ‘the guy with all the paychecks and subscribers’, he was humane and thoughtful and one of the most respected internet individuals for a some time.
Connor Franta – The Thirst Project.
After Tyler’s massive birthday donation success, Connor followed in his footsteps to continue the positive birthday ripples on to his own fans. Choosing instead to support The Thirst Project, Franta’s fans raised over $230k in the hopes of being entered into a prize draw. The winner was lucky enough to win the opportunity to get a coffee with him in LA!
Jack and Finn – Teenage Cancer Trust.
And lastly, we have the JacksGap boys and their momental fundraising efforts with Teenage Cancer Trust. By taking a collection of famous faces, including FunForLouis and Will Darbyshire, on a trip around India, we at home were able to see everywhere that needed help and support across the country from our subscription boxes.
In the end, Jack and Finn raised $177,496 for charity and offered one lucky fan the chance to fly to London, stay in a swanky hotel and go out to dinner with the boys. Oh how we envied the winner…
Now, this isn’t an exhausted list of the only YouTubers that focus their efforts on charity work. In fact we totally missed Troye Sivan, Frankie Grande and Markiplier off! But the point still remains as clear as day – YouTubers aren’t just the one dimensional vlog uploading machines we expect; they have the capacity to be so so much more.
These are real people with hearts and a need to see the good in the world. So if you’ve missed Tyler’s birthday and won’t be able to create a video in time for Project 4 Awesome, make sure you hope over to YogsCast’s Jingle Jam at some point this month and spread a little bit of holiday cheer to somebody else who could seriously need your donation.