Skip to content – A Digital Giving Year in Review

by on January 16, 2013

When we launched, our social impact arm, in 2009 we were excited to provide players an accessible and fun way to give back to the causes they care about. What we didn’t anticipate was just how big an impact Zynga players would make. With more than 95 in-game social impact campaigns and 3 million player contributions, our players have raised funds for a wide range of global non-profits, from international relief agencies to organizations working to address basic human needs, such as food, water and maternal, newborn and child health. Since 2009, Zynga players have generously contributed nearly $15 million, showcasing the power of social games as a platform for positive social impact.

Needless to say, 2012 was a great year for digital giving. Together with our players, this year we raised more than $4 million across nearly 50 in-game campaigns.

In December, we partnered with Toys for Tots in our largest company-wide charitable campaign outside of disaster relief. Over the 2012 holiday season, the “Oh, What Fun!” campaign enabled players to contribute through the purchase of virtual goods in 11 of Zynga’s  games – with 100 percent of the purchase price going to Toys for Tots.

Through contributions from 80,000 players, the Oh, What Fun! campaign raised $745,000, which will provide approximately 60,000 toys and books to children in need across the U.S. A few fun facts on how our players gave this holiday season:

  • 67,000: The number of toys players wrapped in CityVille
  • 101,409: The number of Cheer Ewe Up Horses gifted in FarmVille
  • 9,407: The number of Bubble packs sold in Bubble Safari
  • 17,534: Total Snow Towers purchased in CastleVille

Here are some of the other amazing giving moments from 2012:

  • Founded by Gary White and Matt Damon, pioneers innovative, community-driven and market-based solutions to provide people across the world with access to safe water and sanitation. and have been partners since 2010, working to educate players and deliver solutions to the water crisis. Through Zynga players’ contributions in 2012, will be able to provide approximately 20,655 people with access to clean water for the rest of their lives.
  • AARP Foundation Drive to End Hunger: In partnership with AARP’s Drive to End Hunger, FarmVille players purchased limited edition in-game virtual goods like a Tractor and Grocery Tree to decorate their farms while helping to end hunger among senior citizens. The two-week campaign provided more than 700,000 meals to older adults in need.
  • Words With Friends Celebrity Challenge: Millions of Zynga players simultaneously gave back while virtually brushing elbows with some of Hollywood’s elite this year in our first Words With Friends Celebrity Challenge, sponsored by our friends at American Express. Household names Edward Norton, Kristen Bell, Sophia Bush, Jonah Hill, John Legend, Snoop Lion, Eva Longoria and Paul Pierce duked it out to win a portion of $500,000 to donate to their charity of choice, with Edward Norton taking the prize for the Maasai Wilderness Conservation Fund.

What a tremendous year it has been for giving back and making an impact in the real world through games! A heartfelt thanks to all of our players who contributed not only this holiday season but throughout all of 2012. As we head into 2013, be sure to follow our latest happenings at, and let’s make the world a better place through play.

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