Viewers and players can expect an exciting evening of programming, including gameplay from popular titles Among Us and Jackbox games, with kids and families living with muscular dystrophy, ALS, and related neuromuscular diseases, coming together to build community.
NEW YORK, June 1, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- The Muscular Dystrophy Association's (MDA) 2021 National Spokesperson, Nyheim Hines, running back for the NFL's Indianapolis Colts, will join the MDA Let's Play gaming community on Saturday, June 12 from 7-8pm for the organization's weekly game night. Hines, whose mother lives with limb-girdle muscular dystrophy (LGMD), is joining families who live with muscular dystrophy, ALS, and related neuromuscular diseases to raise awareness and funds for the mission. Giveaway prizes from Hines include personally autographed Indianapolis Colts jerseys. This stream will be hosted by Beaniez, and special guests will be dropping by throughout the evening.
"I love gaming and I love to help MDA amplify their mission so we can find cures for my mom and all MDA families. Raising awareness and coming together as a community through gaming is a chance for everyone to connect and energize the mission to fund breakthrough science and care through research," said Hines.
Players from across the NFL have supported the Muscular Dystrophy Association over many decades, and Hines' support of MDA in the NFL's My Cause, My Cleats annual campaign, caught the eye of 17-year-old Jayston Paulson. After a hip injury took him out of track in 8th grade, Paulson was diagnosed with Lambert-Eaton myasthenic syndrome (LEMS). Undeterred, Paulson earned a spot on his football team during his sophomore year before becoming 1st team all-district during his junior year. As someone who pursued football despite his neuromuscular disease, Paulson saw Hines' engagement with MDA, and wanted to support the organization alongside him. Paulson will be gaming with Hines on Saturday, June 12.
"I am excited to meet Nyheim! I really like how he represents neuromuscular diseases as the MDA Spokesperson this year, especially with his customized MDA cleats which is what initially caught my eye!" said Paulson. "After reading more about him and learning what he has gone through with his family, it's cool to know that there's someone playing the game I love, that can actually relate to me in a way. I thought I was possibly the only connection between this disease and playing football."
Hines' cleats included the names of his grandmother, mother and uncle, all of whom live or have lived with limb-girdle muscular dystrophy (LGMD), one of over 43 neuromuscular diseases MDA treats and seeks to cure.
The purpose of MDA's weekly game night programming, which launched to keep families connected throughout the pandemic, is to drive awareness and fundraising for the mission to provide the best care, fund clinical trials and research for cures, and advocate for access for the disability community. MDA Let's Play is now a year-round gaming community that comes together weeknights and every weekend for Saturday night game nights.
The community solidified throughout the pandemic with MDA families being at high-risk to COVID-19. MDA provided a safe place for families to come together, and for MDA Summer Campers nationwide to stay connected with their friends when in-person camp was canceled due to the pandemic. To date, there are over 2,000 people who have joined the MDA Let's Play community on Twitch and Discord. You can follow MDA Let's Play for daily updates here.
"It has been tremendously rewarding to be able to keep our families connected through our virtual programming year-round. Gaming is a great equalizer for people with disabilities and provides a platform for entertainment and inclusion. MDA Let's Play is an innovative gaming platform that connects influential gamers and streamers with our community. We're thrilled to welcome our national spokesperson, Nyheim Hines to the game," said Kristine Welker, Chief of Staff, MDA.
Background on MDA Let's Play
MDA Let's Play Launch Press Release
MDA Let's Play For A Cure Streamathon
In 2020, MDA Let's Play For A Cure brought together some of the biggest names in gaming, including Zedd, missharvey, Voyboy, Trick2g, JonSandman, Clayster of NY Subliners, and Stixxay and xSojin of Counter League Gaming, among others, and showcased gameplay from Among Us, League of Legends, Rocket League, Fall Guys, Call of Duty and more.
About the Muscular Dystrophy Association
For 70 years, the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) has been committed to transforming the lives of people living with muscular dystrophy, ALS, and related neuromuscular diseases. We do this through innovations in science and innovations in care. As the largest source of funding for neuromuscular disease research outside of the federal government, MDA has committed more than $1 billion since our inception to accelerate the discovery of therapies and cures. Research we have supported is directly linked to life-changing therapies across multiple neuromuscular diseases. MDA's MOVR is the first and only data hub that aggregates clinical, genetic, and patient-reported data for multiple neuromuscular diseases to improve health outcomes and accelerate drug development. MDA supports the largest network of multidisciplinary clinics providing best-in-class care at more than 150 of the nation's top medical institutions. Our Resource Center serves the community with one-on-one specialized support, and we offer educational conferences, events, and materials for families and healthcare providers. MDA Advocacy supports equal access for our community, and each year thousands of children and young adults learn vital life skills and gain independence at summer camp and through recreational programs, at no cost to families. During the COVID-19 pandemic, MDA continues to produce virtual events and programming to support our community when in-person events and activities are not possible. MDA's COVID-19 guidelines and virtual events are posted at mda.org/COVID19. For more information, visit mda.org.
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SOURCE Muscular Dystrophy Association