The AbleGamers charity yesterday announced the opening of the first ever AbleGamers Lab. The facility, designed for gamers with special needs, is located in the headquarters of the AbleGamers Charity, just outside Washington, DC. The laboratory, geared towards disabled gamers, is equipped with every top-end gaming device and video game on the market, as well as an array of assistive technology that gives special needs players access.
"This day has been nearly a decade in the making," exclaimed Mark Barlet, Founder and Director of the AbleGamers Charity. "Up until this point, the AbleGamers lab has only been a dream."
"But I'm proud to announce that this dream has become a reality," continued Barlet. "We already have our first appointment scheduled and will continue consulting with special needs gamers as quickly as we can. It is, has been, and always will be our primary goal to empower and enable any gamer with disabilities to play video games."
"It's all thanks to the community," added COO and Outreach Chair Steve Spohn. "We have had a tremendous outpouring of generosity from the video game industry and community over the last year. These amazing donors have enabled us to begin consulting with gamers one-on-one to figure out the exact equipment each individual needs to get back into the game."
Consultation at the laboratory is free, but is carried out by appointment only.
Generally, these consultations take one to two hours, but may take
longer depending on each individual's particular needs and requirements.
Gamers with special needs (or their caretakers) can email
firstname.lastname@example.org to set up an appointment.
The AbleGamers Foundation - also known as The AbleGamers Charity - was founded back in 2005 my Mark Barlet and Stephanie Walker, with the aim of enabling disabled gamers to keep playing video games for recreation and rehabilitation in spite of their disabilities. In 2009, it was officially recognized by the IRS as a charity. In 2012, the charity opened up the Accessibility Arcade, and in 2013 the organization was awarded the daVinci Award for its advancements in assistive technology.
More information about the lab, arcade, and organization can be found on the AbleGamers website.