"We’re proud to be part of this community, and we were excited at the chance to take the studio into the streets"

Hi everyone, Anna (aka Mama Monkey) here!  

Sam (aka Chiefmonkey) and I had a fun day last Saturday running a Balancing Monkey Games stall at the South Dunedin Street Festival. These days, we’re always enormously grateful when we’re able to get together with lots of people - something we would have taken totally for granted just over a year ago.

Sam watching on as people play games.

As managing director, part of my job is helping to set the vision for the company. Part of the vision that we’re committed to is having a positive impact on our local community. For the five years from 2015 to 2020 I worked in a medical centre in South Dunedin, which is one of the poorest urban areas in the country, so when I changed role last year I was determined to keep doing what I could for the people here. That’s why we set up our office in this part of town.

We’re proud to be part of this community, and we were excited at the chance to take the studio into the streets… or at least, to set up a couple of TVs and have kids come and play games with us!

Before We Leave featuring some delicious locally made Samosa and Mango Lassi

As Sam likes to tell people, one of the “sad” downsides of running a computer game company is that you are forced to buy a PlayStation and a Switch on company money, as well as games “for research purposes”. (Before I get into trouble with my accountant, we really ARE doing research, I promise!)

The upside is that we then get to hang out and play fun games with people, and show our wider community what we do, and (my favourite part) watching kids teach each other, help each other, and be the expert! It’s also pretty cool talking to other people in the street who love playing the same games that we love.

We all need a bit of help with controllers sometimes!

We were part of the Youth Zone of the Street Festival, right next to Rock Solid Youth Aotearoa. A big thank you to the South Dunedin Community Network who organised the event and who do a whole heap of work keeping this community connected. If you want to know more about the street festival, read more about it in the Otago Daily Times article here.

Aroha and appropriately physically-distanced hugs, 

Anna (Mama Monkey)