Doug’s game to help sick kids in Dundee with new charity

Doug Gowans is working with Get Well Gamers to benefit children in hospital.
Doug Gowans is working with Get Well Gamers to benefit children in hospital.

A Dundee gamer is looking to give old consoles a new lease of life through a charity that helps sick kids.

Doug Gowans, 32, from Douglas, is one of the city’s first Get Well Gamers volunteers.

The charity, which was set up in Glasgow in 2015, has grown throughout the UK, with more than 50 volunteers dedicated to bringing electronic entertainment to children’s hospitals, hospices and other facilities for the benefit of entertainment and pain relief.

The former Craigie High pupil is on the first level in his new role, but is looking for Dundonians to donate any gaming devices, including hand-held consoles, games consoles and video games.

Doug, a self-confessed gaming enthusiast, is looking to push the right buttons and work with Ninewells Hospital and other facilities in the area.

He said: “I was first made aware of the charity about five or six months ago.

“I thought it was a great way of bringing some old consoles back to life that were perhaps gathering dust in people’s homes.

“I’ve just recently received a stack of Nintendo Wii games and, hopefully, once we make a point of contact at Ninewells, we will be able to donate some of the items to them in places, such as the paediatric ward.”

Chairman-elect of Get Well Gamers, Joe Payne, 32, who lives in Kent, said the charity is looking for more people to get involved.

He said: “I’ve worked with hospitals and hospices in Ashford in Kent.

“It’s been great to see consoles from the nurses’ and doctors’ childhoods being brought into the wards and seeing them playing the games against the kids.

“We have more than 50 volunteers and we always welcome people who are willing to get involved.

“I would advise anyone who is donating to check our website — we always welcome portable consoles, as not everyone can get out of their beds to play some of the consoles.”

Doug added: “I’ll be having a stall at the upcoming DeeCon at West Ward Works next month.

“Recent studies have shown gaming is a therapeutic way of enjoying down time.

“Given Dundee’s rich gaming history, its seems a no-brainer to try to get the city involved in this great charity — which will, hopefully, soon be benefiting the city.”