Bushfires, floods, drought, Covid-19 – regional Australia was dealt blow after blow this year, and local communities are struggling.
There are many ways we can help: holiday with an empty esky and fill it with local produce; buy online from affected businesses and artisans; and join fundraising events that support those communities.
You can now also add a very 2020 version of Monopoly to your board-games arsenal, with $5 from every purchase donated to the Australian Red Cross, along with $2 from every purchase of the accompanying jigsaw puzzle.
It’s by Winning Moves Australia, which created the new design with a license from Hasbro. Charlotte Waalkens, head of global licensing and Australian commercial head, said in a statement, “The communities chosen have all gone through a tough time for one reason or another as everyone has in 2020, and we thought they deserved something special to remind everyone how incredible they are, and help inject some positive spirit.”
Mayfair, Trafalgar Square and Euston Road have been replaced by 22 regional areas such as Kalgoorlie and Busselton in WA; Batemans Bay and the Blue Mountains in NSW; Noosa and Bundaberg in Queensland; Mount Gambier in South Australia; and Mildura and Gippsland in Victoria.
The Community Chest and Chance cards have also gotten a 2020 makeover, with one ordering players to pay $50 for hoarding 240 rolls of toilet paper. Utilities have been replaced with wildlife conservation and habitat reservations, and there are also squares that tell you to donate and volunteer. Plus the player pieces have been replaced by Aussie icons such as a kookaburra, a Sherrin footy, a slouch hat and the Harbour Bridge.
As with the classic game, you start at “Go” to collect $200, build hotels on the squares you land on, potentially go to jail, and collect as many properties as you can, and drive your friends bankrupt by raising rents (hopefully it doesn't happen to those places IRL).
“We wanted to provide Australians with something positive in the challenging year that is 2020, and highlight how incredible our own backyard is, whilst also supporting Australians in need,” Waalkens further said.
The Australian Community Relief Edition Monopoly board game ($59.99) and puzzle ($19.99) are available in retailers nationwide from Wednesday November 25.