JDRF, the leading global organization funding type 1 diabetes (T1D) research, has partnered with Insulet Corporation to bring diabetes representation to the popular Nintendo Switch game Animal Crossing: New Horizons. Players can visit the diabetes-themed island, Omnipod Bay, by using dream code DA-9645-5879-6910 in the game.
Insulet invited JDRF to be one of four nonprofits featured on the island, which was created to be an inclusive, family-friendly destination where players can see their T1D experiences reflected in the game. Players can also download 15 in-game outfits that include insulin pumps and diabetes supply bags, to create characters that look like them.
“My brother and I both live with T1D, and we grew up playing video games. If we’d seen this type of diabetes representation in a game as kids, it would have meant so much,” says Aaron Kowalski, Ph.D., CEO, JDRF International. “JDRF is proud to partner with Insulet for this unique experience, and we are excited for the diabetes community to explore Omnipod Bay.”
On Omnipod Bay, players can complete an obstacle maze to gain access to a secret lounge, walk the runway in their new diabetes-ready outfits, perform in a concert, snap selfies in locales sprinkled with diabetes in-jokes, and piece together a hidden code to win an in-game prize. JDRF and three other advocacy partners — Beyond Type 1, Children with Diabetes, and Kyler Cares Foundation — have booths on the island and custom shirts and hats available for download.
“Representation of people with diabetes is important to us, so we looked for an opportunity to make diabetes part of everyday culture,” said Lei Mercado, Chief Marketing Officer of Insulet Corporation. “We worked closely with the diabetes community, leading advocacy groups, and gamers to see how we could educate others. Our hope is that the Animal Crossing integration will help people with diabetes feel more included, connected, and seen in a fun and engaging way.”
Omnipod Bay will be revealed today in a livestream and fundraising event organized by JDRF Game2Give, a program that mobilizes the video game community to raise money toward finding cures. Starting at 3:00 p.m. Eastern time, five content creators who live with T1D will visit the island, compete in party games, and collect donations while streaming the experience to their respective Twitch channels. Tune in on JDRF’s Twitch channel or visit the Tiltify event page to contribute toward the $15,000 fundraising goal.
To learn more about JDRF’s presence on Omnipod Bay, visit this blog post: https://www.jdrf.org/blog/2022/02/17/jdrf-is-in-animal-crossing-new-horizons/