@CalamityDarling, 29 – FUNDED

Variety/charity streamer @CalamityDarling likes to refer to herself as a “mental health senshi”— a “sailor scout” — who is committed to normalizing the importance of caring for one’s mental health. This content creator, multi-hobbyist (think cosplay, singing, creating video games, and more!), and BroadcastHER Grant winner might also be a bit of a self-proclaimed “goofball,” but she is serious about making sure her messages cultivate a positive mental health practice — and she’s all about creating a positive, diverse space that gives to those in need.

What is your dream as a digital broadcaster?

I want to create a safe, diverse and inclusive space that lifts spirits and encourages others to pursue their dreams! I also want to give back to community however I can and de-stigmatize mental health.

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

It will allow me to rebrand and better promote myself and my channel.

What does being the recipient of the BroadcastHER Grant mean to you?

Being a recipient means so much! It’s a sign that I am going in the right direction by finally deciding to pursue my passions. I’m so thankful — and I’m excited to see what I can grow to with this assistance!

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

We need to make spaces for women to unlearn everything society and their upbringing has told them. We also need to encourage women and create more opportunities for them to realize that we really can do anything we put our minds to — despite what others say! And we can be ourselves while we do it!

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

Being a BIPOC woman often feels like two strikes against you in the industry. There is a tendency to hide — to coast by quietly by turning off chat, not speaking, and having a “generic” user name so no one can identify your gender. There is also a pressure, being Black, that you are “too [fill in the blank]” or “not enough [fill in the blank]” for what people stereotype you as. The industry tends to be harder on you, and the bar you have to meet to even be glanced at is higher. So, you have to work 10 times harder to be noticed.

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

I had decided to pursue broadcasting three years ago but only in the last year did I actually gather the courage to do it. I made all the excuses — who would care; I’m not good enough at gaming; would I even be good? Now, I wish I had started sooner! There is space out there for your unique creativity and talents. You will find your people. Just go for it!

How do you stay motivated and focused on your goals?

I keep a circle of empowering, inspirational, and encouraging friends. That has been my biggest help — with groups like Brown Girl Gamer Code that have introduced me to incredible and driven people that inspire me. I also set realistic goals for myself, make sure I take care of myself so I don’t burn out, and I remember to have fun! At the end of the day, you have to have fun!