Pokémon x Girls Who Code Fundraiser


I recently picked up an old Gameboy and dug out my original Pokémon games. I started playing a new game of Pokémon Crystal in December 2021 with the intention of collecting all 249 Pokémon eventually. I thought, why not make this a little more meaningful, while still having fun, and so this fundraiser was born.

Here is how it will work. You can pledge a certain donation per Pokémon that I catch in the game. This will run until December 1st 2022. Your pledge is non-binding. You can back out if you want, but that would be lame. There are a max of 249 Pokémon, so next to the pledge amounts I've included what the max donation could end up being. In December 2022 I'll send out requests for donations (please make sure your email is correct!) based on how many Pokémon I was able to catch by then. I'll then collect all of the money and donate it to Girls Who Code, or if you would prefer to make the donation yourself to Girls Who Code instead of consolidating it with me, that is also encouraged (you would also get a receipt for tax purposes that way). I'll also share the total amount pledged and collected with everyone who participated. For some more details on the restrictions I'm placing on myself while playing read the very last section on this form (or just skip over it if you don't want to get into nerdy details).

100% of the donations will go to Girls Who Code. Their mission is to close the gender gap in the technology industry. Having worked in the industry for 10+ years, trust me when I say... it is a huge gap. Check them out here: https://girlswhocode.com/. I like to think that this donation might positively impact my daughter someday.

As of 1/1/2021, with just a month of calendar time, I've already caught 66 out of 249, so keep that in mind. I expect the rate at which I catch new Pokémon to slow down a little bit, but reaching 249 in 1 year should be doable.

Thanks for reading and considering donating.

Update #1

January 28, 2022

Hi everyone!

Thank you so much for making a pledge for my fundraiser! As of now I have 9 people who pledged, and if I catch all the Pokemon possible we will raise $846!

Now, a couple things. First of all, I won't email very often, max once per month, but I'm sure I'll get busy and skip some months. Second, I'll continue to reach out and find more people to pledge, but I'm just reaching out to people I personally know for the most part. Hopefully we can cross the $1000 mark! Lastly, here is an update on my progress so far.

Some photos of my progress:

12/31/2021 - Transferring over some Pokemon from Blue 1/6/2022 - Reached the Elite Four 1/7/2022 - Caught Lapras, only shows up on Friday nights and an integral part of my team to beat the Elite Four 1/11/2022 - My team assembled to beat the Elite Four 1/11/2022 - Beat the Elite Four on my first try, though I did spend 10+ hours planning and raising the team to do it 1/17/2022 - Made my way into the Kanto region and caught Snorlax 1/23/2022 - Completed all 16 gyms 1/23/2022 - Reached Red in Mt. Silver, it will be a long time before I can beat him though 1/28/2022 - Made a spreadsheet of all the Pokemon I have yet to catch, and what I need to do

Update #2

March 20, 2022

Hi everyone!

With a few more pledges made in March, we just made it over the $1000 mark! Awesome! Now it's just up to me to actually catch all of the Pokemon. Here's a progress report on that:

Some photos of my progress:

2/6/2022 - Ran into one of the legendary Pokemon, have yet to catch it though. It is easier to catch now that I have seen it once. 2/20/2022 - Caught the legendary Pokemon Lugia 3/7/2022 - Modified an original Gameboy with a new backlit screen. It just felt right to be playing Yellow on this. 3/12/2022 - Evolved Eevee into Espeon. This one is particularly tough because it evolves by happiness which takes a long time to build up. I'll have two more Pokemon I need to evolve this way
3/12/2022 - Made a series of trades to evolve some Pokemon. Golem and Haunter evolve merely by trading, Scizor requires the Metal Coat while being traded. 3/19/2022 - Evolved Pupitar into Tyranitar. This is one of my favorite Pokemon, and one of the harder to get since it doesn't evolve until level 55.

Update #3

April 14, 2022

We are in the home stretch now!

List of Pokemon still to catch:

Some photos of my progress:

3/23/2022 - Took a long time, but finally got Golbat friendly enough with me to evolve 4/1/2022 - Managed to see Raikou for the first time 4/2/2022 - It took a few attempts, but I had to win the bug catching contest at least twice to get two sun stones to evolve Gloom and Sunkern 4/2/2022 - Finished catching the legendary dogs (cats?), it was actually much easier than I remember it being 4/3/2022 - Reached the top of Tin Tower to catch Ho-oh 4/10/2022 - Caught Zapdos and Articuno 4/10/2022 - Reached the laboratory on Cinnabar Island where you can resurrect fossil Pokemon 4/11/2022 - Caught Moltres on my way through Victory Road

4/12/2022 - Huge day of trading Pokemon over from Yellow, and evolving Pokemon with stones 4/13/2022 - Reached Cerulean Cave and caught Mewtwo 4/14/2022 - Caught Chansey in Cerulean Cave, now it will take me a very long time to raise its happiness to evolve 4/14/2022 - Transfered Mewtwo over from Yellow

Update #4

May 6, 2022

We're getting really close now! I'm surprised to be this close to done only halfway through the year. I fully expected it to come down to the wire in November, maybe finishing up with a lot of play time over Thanksgiving, but all of my planning up front paid off to ensure I wasn't wasting any effort or time. Though, I did discover that I had not fully thought out how I was going to get Remoraid. It requires the Super Rod, which I thought was acquirable much earlier in the game. Turns out it was one of the very last items you get, so I had to play much further through Gold than I thought I would have too. I've also been playing a lot because I'm really excited to do something new with my time after this. More on that in the final update. Now for some details:

List of Pokemon still to catch:

Some photos of my progress:

4/17/2022 - I also transferred an egg over to Gold so it could hatch while I was walking around so much 4/17/2022 - While playing through Gold I made sure to only register the phone numbers of the trainers I needed for Yanma and Qwilfish to increase the chances of them calling me 4/23/2022 - Picked up the Dome Fossil on my second play-through of Yellow 4/25/2022 - Picked up Hitmonlee on my second play-through of Yellow 4/26/2022 - Reached Cinnabar Island with the Dome Fossil, traded Kabuto over to Crystal 5/1/2022 - I would have had the Super Rod much earlier, but I miscalculated and realized it was much later into the game than I thought 5/2/2022 - Used the Super Rod to finally catch Remoraid and Qwilfish 5/3/2022 - I also transferred Chansey over to Gold and made sure to use Chansey in all the major battles so its friendship level would increase enough to evolve
5/4/2022 - Traded over all of the remaining Pokémon I needed from Gold, including a Slowpoke with King's Rock to get Slowking 5/4/2022 - Cleffa hatched! Only on more egg to hatch now...

Update #5

May 12, 2022

Hot off the heels of update #4, I have finally caught all 249 Pokemon that are currently obtainable in Pokemon Crystal! But... I'm not done yet. This is the goal I set out to achieve, and I got there much faster than I anticipated, so I'm going to add a little bit more. I'll have a 6th and final update sometime in a few weeks or so. I won't give away what I'm going to do yet so it can be a surprise for the final update. Stay tuned!

List of Pokemon still to catch: None...?

Progress photos:

5/7/2022 - Hatched Smoochum just by walking up and down through Goldenrod City over and over 5/7/2022 - Used a Moon Stone on Clefairy 5/7/2022 - Started my second to last Elite Four run, evolved Remoraid into Octillery there 5/9/2022 - Continued that second to last Elite Four run, fully evolved Mareep into Flaaffy and then Ampharos 5/11/2022 - Needed one final run through the Elite Four to evolve Kabuto 5/11/2022 - Final playtime and Pokemon count

Update #6

September 9, 2022

In the last update I completed the goal of catching 249 Pokemon, but I mentioned I still had one more update to do. I didn't anticipate it happening 2 3 (I started this email a long time ago...) 4 months later, but life happens and here we are. I'm still really happy to have completed that goal early and it gave me the time to do a couple more things.

As I mentioned at the beginning of the fundraiser, I was only going for 249 Pokemon because out of the 251 total, there are 2 that are not legitimately obtainable any more because they were distributed by Nintendo at special events over 2 decades ago. While those 2 Pokemon aren't part of the fundraiser, I still had to get them, and here is how I did it as legit as possible in 2022.

#151 Mew

My memory of receiving Mew when I was a kid was from a Toys R Us store event back in 1999. In order to get Mew today, I was able to find a save file that was dumped from a Pokemon Red cartridge which was actually used to distribute Mew at a Toys R Us store back in 1999. An employee held onto the cartridge, and many years later enthusiasts contacted this person in order to retrieve the save file from the cartridge. I downloaded the save file, loaded it onto my copy of Pokemon Red, and was able to trade over a Mew just as it would have been done in 1999. The full story behind that cartridge, some photos of it, and the save file are all here if you're interested. Here is Mew in my completed Pokemon Crystal game:

#251 Celebi

Celebi was distributed in a few different ways back in 2001 and 2002. I don't recall how I got mine originally. One of the methods to get Celebi was to visit the Pokemon Center store in New York. That particular store was responsible for distributing a bunch of other special event Pokemon as well. Enthusiasts on the internet have been able to get Gamecube memory cards from that store which contained the distribution Pokemon, and have been able to put together save files with most of the Pokemon that were available. I loaded one of those save files onto my copy of Pokemon Gold, and traded over a Celebi. Here it is in my completed Pokemon Crystal game:

And with Celebi and Mew traded over, I reached 251 Pokemon in my completed Crystal game:


There is one more unofficial Pokemon that existed "back in the day". Pokemon Red and Blue were released in the states in September 1998. By May of 1999, some glitches in the games were discovered that allowed players to encounter a glitched Pokemon known as "Missingno.". It's one of the most famous video game glitches ever, even two decades later. There's even a Wikipedia page about it. It's an easy glitch to reproduce, and I had to do it for old time's sake.

Generation 3

My fundraiser and everything I played from December to May covered the Generation 1 and 2 Pokemon games. Those were the ones I played as a kid and were nostalgic about. This was so much fun though that I didn't want it to end, so I went a little crazy and bought every single Pokemon game (at least the "main" ones) over the course of this year. Now I'm on a new mission to play all of them in order and catch a complete set of Pokemon for each generation. It's going to take me years. I'm not going to keep running fundraisers though, that was a one time thing. Or maybe I will do another one someday, but certainly not every year or for every generation.

Since May, and the completion of my Gen 1/2 Pokedex in Crystal, I've put over 160 hours into the Gen 3 games. Here are a few photos of my progress so far:

And Beyond

I took a couple photos of the games and systems I played for this fundraiser, and I liked them so much that I ended up taking photos of all the Pokemon games and their associated systems:


That's it! We're all done! I will send out individual emails immediately after this one reminding you how much you pledged per Pokemon, the total amount and a link to donate.

If everyone donates their pledged amount, we will have raised $1,369.50 for Girls Who Code!

Thank you SO much for making your pledge and going on this weird journey with me. Hopefully you found some amusement in my ramblings along the way.