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Pat Lafontaine

Mike Green intros XBox 360 kiosks

NHL All Star defenseman Mike Green of the Washington Capitals helped launch the CiC Foundation’s mobile XBox 360 program at The Children’s Inn at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, MD today. He played video games on the portable units with patients from throughout the country. But the highlight was a video chat and a spirited online game of NHL 2K9 with Pat LaFontaine.

LaFontaine manned the controls on an XBox 360 unit in New York and spent several minutes video chatting with the children who gathered to meet live with Green in Bethesda. LaFontaine told the children about how they would be able to video conference and play games with children at other hospitals throughout North America.

Microsoft has already distributed almost 200 XBox 360 units to hospitals throughout the country. They have also built a safe XBox Live community that can only be accessed by children on the CiC Foundation’s “Lion’s Den” network. The Children’s Inn and the hospital at the National Institutes of Health have eight of the mobile XBox units.

Green was happy to meet with LaFontaine online and they quickly set up a “classic” game of NHL 2K9. Naturally, Green was the Capitals, while LaFontaine selected the Caps’ next opponent – the Atlanta Thrashers. They played and laughed for a while and then Green handed the controls to some of the children. There was plenty of smiles and whoops of victory.

LaFontaine said, “This is what it’s all about. These units give patients a chance to just be a kid and to forget for a little while why they are even at the Inn.” Green was also impressed with the units. “We need one of these for our locker room,” he said.

Mike Allen from Microsoft’s Federal office represented the Redmond-based firm. He said, “It is so important to provide a distraction for these kids when they are going through some of the toughest challenges of their lives. Microsoft is proud to be able to help Pat LaFontaine make this all possible.”

Fern Stone of The Children’s Inn said, “It’s amazing how quickly the children forget what they are here for once they start playing. And now they will be able to play with children in other healthcare facilities, so they’ll never be alone.”

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