Electronic Arts has announced a partnership with the UK Government and mental health charity CALM (Campaign Against Living Miserably), in support of the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport’s (DCMS) #LetsTalkLoneliness campaign.
At Piccadilly Circus this week, as part of #LonelinessAwarenessWeek, you can see the CALM logo up on the big screens as we teamed up with @EASPORTS & @Copa90 to share an important message about talking to people and checking in on each other. #LetsTalkLoneliness pic.twitter.com/tCE0HgAo9R
— CALM (@theCALMzone) June 16, 2020
The initiative is a part of Loneliness Awareness Week, which runs from 15-19 June. Electronic Arts is calling on UK gamers to use their love of games as a way to combat loneliness during these difficult times, as more people than ever struggle with loneliness due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“In times like these, it’s more important than ever for people to talk and share their feelings with friends” said Samantha Ebelthite, Head of EA UK. “Over the last couple of months, we’ve seen even more people using games as a way to stay home but connect with others.
“We’re therefore encouraging all gamers to set up a game with friends or family and use the opportunity to talk about how they’re feeling. We may be far apart but games can bring us much closer together.”
According to research from CALM, six in ten people in the UK said they are experiencing anxiety during the COVID-19 pandemic but almost a third (30%) said they would not likely to talk to someone if they are struggling with their feelings. Those experiencing anxiety for the first time are least likely to speak to friends or family about how they are feeling.
“Playing video games has given many people enjoyment at home during lockdown as well as being another way for people to stay in touch with friends and family,” said the Minister for Loneliness, Baroness Barran.
“This Loneliness Awareness Week, it’s more important than ever that we stay connected and I’m delighted Electronic Arts and CALM are supporting our campaign.”
This is not the only example of the games industry rallying in support of Loneliness Awareness week – UKIE has launched the Play & Talk Weekend, taking place this weekend (June 20th and 21st) which is designed to address loneliness in the UK.