EDITORIAL USE ONLY A digital billboard goes on display in Piccadilly Circus during Loneliness Awareness Week as gaming company Electronic Arts joins with UK Government and mental health charity CALM to launch the #LetsTalkLoneliness campaign, London. PA Photo. Issue date: Tuesday June 16, 2020. The campaign aims to help gamers find resources and support to cope with loneliness during times of social distancing. Photo credit should read: Jeff Spicer/PA Wire

EA partners with UK Government and CALM to support #LetsTalkLoneliness

Electronic Arts has announced a partnership with the UK Government and mental health charity CALM (Campaign Against Living Miserably), in support of the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport’s (DCMS) #LetsTalkLoneliness campaign.

The initiative is a part of Loneliness Awareness Week, which runs from 15-19 June. Electronic Arts is calling on UK gamers to use their love of games as a way to combat loneliness during these difficult times, as more people than ever struggle with loneliness due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“In times like these, it’s more important than ever for people to talk and share their feelings with friends” said Samantha Ebelthite, Head of EA UK. “Over the last couple of months, we’ve seen even more people using games as a way to stay home but connect with others. 

“We’re therefore encouraging all gamers to set up a game with friends or family and use the opportunity to talk about how they’re feeling. We may be far apart but games can bring us much closer together.” 

According to research from CALM, six in ten people in the UK said they are experiencing anxiety during the COVID-19 pandemic but almost a third (30%) said they would not likely to talk to someone if they are struggling with their feelings. Those experiencing anxiety for the first time are least likely to speak to friends or family about how they are feeling.

Playing video games has given many people enjoyment at home during lockdown as well as being another way for people to stay in touch with friends and family,” said the Minister for Loneliness, Baroness Barran.

“This Loneliness Awareness Week, it’s more important than ever that we stay connected and I’m delighted Electronic Arts and CALM are supporting our campaign.”

This is not the only example of the games industry rallying in support of Loneliness Awareness week – UKIE has launched the Play & Talk Weekend, taking place this weekend (June 20th and 21st) which is designed to address loneliness in the UK.

About Chris Wallace

Chris is a freelancer writer and was MCV/DEVELOP's staff writer from November 2019 until May 2022. He joined the team after graduating from Cardiff University with a Master's degree in Magazine Journalism. He can be found on Twitter at @wallacec42, where he mostly explores his obsession with the Life is Strange series, for which he refuses to apologise.

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