A gaming-fanatic supporter has put his skills to the test for Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity by taking on a 24-hour live-streaming challenge, raising over £1,680 for the Birmingham Children’s Hospital’s sick kids.

While browsing through his social media, Ben Bowden, a 31-year-old software developer from Telford, saw an advert for a 24-hour charity game-a-thon and it sparked his imagination. Ben usually only played computer games for fun but why not do the same and use his hobby for good and stream his gameplay on Twitch to raise money for charity?

Ben mentioned the idea to his wife, Leanne, who without skipping a beat, suggested that he support Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity. Although the couple are extremely grateful never to have had to use the hospital services for their own son, Oliver, they know plenty of families who have, including their own nephew, who was treated in the Paediatric Intensive Care Unit for serious Croup.

With the concept of his challenge nailed, Ben logged on to his PC and hunkered down for his 24-hour stint, and made his way through a plethora of games, including Among Us, Warzone and PlayerUnknown’s Battleground (PUBG). Usually more than capable of playing for hours on end, Ben wondered how tough his challenge could be, but he soon realised that the pressure of knowing that other people had donated to watch him play, was the most difficult part of the challenge.

Ben said: “I’d never done any kind of fundraising before but gaming is right up my street and if I’m going to do it anyway, I’d love to use it to make a difference to those who need it most, especially after such a tough year.

“I had a great time playing and it was so humbling to see the donations rolling in. It started to get really tough around the 18-hour mark and although it was harder to concentrate with my viewers talking to me throughout, they really rallied to keep me going… and awake! There was such a fantastic community spirit.”

Miranda Williams, Head of Public Fundraising at Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity, said: “We love hearing about all the different ways that our supporters choose to raise money for us and Ben’s incredible challenge has proven that fundraising really can take any shape! It’s especially ingenious to use something you already do for a hobby as a challenge.

“The funds Ben raised with his 24-hour live-stream will go towards helping us do more for the 90,000 sick kids we treat at our hospital every single year, and we couldn’t be more thankful to him.”