@Athena4Lyfe, 28 – Funded

“I’ve always thought that dreams are just goals that haven’t woken up yet and I am speaking it into existence,” says @Athena4Lyfe who has been playing Tekken for a long time but is excited to venture out and engage in different communities. “Being a broadcaster will give me the opportunity to reach out to everyone about never settling and following their own dreams,” added this BroadcastHER Grant winner.

What is your dream as a digital broadcaster?

I want to grow a community of individuals who won’t be afraid to challenge themselves and are always open to trying new things.

How will your award from the 1,000 Dreams Fund help you reach your goals? 

I will be getting much-needed PC upgrades for some impressive specs for the year 2023. I want to be able to do it all and I need the best of the best to do so. A computer that can stream, game, edit, and record would mean that all the content ideas I have blueprinted can finally become a reality.

What does being a recipient mean to you?

It means the absolute world to me to be a recipient! I have friends who have personally recommended me to apply for the grant after watching their careers literally take off. While I wasn’t expecting to win, it’s quite a wonderful surprise and now I want to be able to help 1DF by spreading the word for this organization to all who may need it.

Women are underrepresented in gaming, broadcasting, and esports. What can we do to change this?

I feel like there’s a lot that can be done, but also not to discredit the work that has been done for the inclusion of women and non-men in gaming and esports so far.

One of the most important things I feel that is needed to make women and non-men feel more included is to ask questions. You’re never going to know how a person truly feels in an industry if you don’t gather information on the things that need improvement.

Numerous times I’ve asked people like myself the why, what, and how — and I feel it’s very important to give that person an opportunity to feel like they are being heard. It goes a long way and can be very beneficial for positive change. Please ask questions!

What are some of the challenges you have faced along the way?

From the very beginning, I knew there would be challenges and I did everything in my power to prevent coming face to face with them — and yet I still managed to find myself in tough situations. Competing in Tekken and wanting to level up had put me in a place where I couldn’t practice with my local scene because I was a girl and was not welcomed.

I’ve been met with skepticism as soon as I entered tournaments because I looked as if I didn’t belong. I’ve been told that I beat a few of my opponents only because they “went easy on me” — the whole nine yards. But I never let these moments of adversity get to me in a way that it hurt. I turned the bad into good and used it to work even harder.

What advice do you have for women who want to start broadcasting?

If you are committed to working in gaming and esports, I encourage you to make sure you really want to do this. This is the type of career that is fully a marathon and not a sprint. It is very important that you do your research and figure out what exactly it is you want to do and then set goals, write them down, and work, work, work as hard as you can to achieve said goals. Pace yourself, though, and don’t stress out on the rough days, because there will be rough days for sure.

How do you stay motivated and focused on your goals? 

I am very serious about being a gamer, competitor, and content creator. I just really thrive off of giving a person a little bit of me in the most authentic way — and I just really want to leave a positive impression on whoever I can through my content.