This clever online game is helping people to passively plant trees around the world simply by answering trivia questions.
Plant the Peace is an internet game that quizzes its players on geography, English vocabulary, and the environment. For every 10 questions that are answered correctly, the game sponsors donate enough money to plant one tree in Africa.
The initiative works similarly to Free Rice, an internet trivia game that donates rice for every English vocabulary question that a user guesses correctly. Since the World Food Program began using the game to generate donations from their sponsorships, Free Rice players have been helping to donate millions of grains of rice every day.
“Many people have asked us why it’s necessary or fair to ask people to play a game in order to help people in need. Why can’t the sponsors just donate the money in advance?” says the Free Rice organizers. “We could, in theory, ask our players to just look at these sponsor messages, unattached to any sort of game. But answering questions and challenging yourself is more motivating than just re-loading a page over and over. Without the game itself, our users would have no reason to return to the site.
“If you have fun with the game, and get smarter by playing it, you are more likely to answer more questions, see more messages, and generate more payments to WFP,” they concluded.
The Plant the Peace trees, meanwhile, are planted by Trees for the Future: a Maryland-based nonprofit dedicated to ending hunger and poverty in sub-Saharan Africa by planting trees. Since the nonprofit only recently launched the game, they have helped to plant about 1,500 trees.
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