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Local hospitals collect video games for children

Republic FC midfielder Rodrigo Lopez plays a video game with patient Jayovonnie Faulk, then 6, as Heather Sims, R.N., looks on at the UC Davis Children’s Hospital Thursday May 14, 2015 in Sacramento, Calif.
Republic FC midfielder Rodrigo Lopez plays a video game with patient Jayovonnie Faulk, then 6, as Heather Sims, R.N., looks on at the UC Davis Children’s Hospital Thursday May 14, 2015 in Sacramento, Calif. pkitagaki@sacbee.com

Need to ditch the video games gathering dust in your basement? Local hospitals say bring them over.

The Sutter Children’s Center and the UC Davis Children’s Hospital are calling for Xbox 360 and PS3 games, consoles and controllers to help keep kids occupied during their hospital stays. They’ll also accept gift cards to GameStop, Target, Walmart and iTunes. Donations can be dropped off at nine Allstate insurance locations, listed below.

Some children are in the hospital for weeks and months at a time and find a lot of comfort in playing video games, said Zack Wandell, a Sutter Children’s Center volunteer. Many children have video game consoles in their rooms, and the teen center also has a communal console.

“It normalizes their hospitalization experience,” he said. “It keeps them focused on fun, gives them something to do and to think about and interact with so they’re not just dwelling on the fact that they’re in the hospital all day.”

A local Allstate employee, Dennis DesLauriers, helped organize the drive, which ends Sept. 24. The following Allstate offices are accepting donations:

▪ 7880 Alta Valley Drive #101, Sacramento

▪ 8150 Sierra College Blvd. #130, Roseville

▪ 8355 Elk Grove Blvd. #400, Elk Grove

▪ 4030 Truxel Road, Sacramento

▪ 726 Main St., Woodland

▪ 2481 Sunrise Blvd., Rancho Cordova

▪ 2197 Main St., Oakley

▪ 5433A Clayton Road, Clayton

▪ 3244 Brookside Road #170, Stockton

Sammy Caiola: 916-321-1636, @SammyCaiola

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