@CarrieSwidecki, 42 – FUNDED

Age really is just a number for @CarrieSwidecki; you’d never guess that this exergamer and world-record holder is 42 years old. However, the BroadcastHER Grant recipient knows that the streaming world can be a bit (or a lot) ageist. But, that just keeps her motivated towards her goals which include setting another marathon world record while inspiring other women in her age bracket to pursue their dreams.

What is your dream as a digital broadcaster?

My dream is to get partnered on Twitch; set my next marathon world record on the Twitch front page; and become a 2019 TwitchCon Ambassador.

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

I can finally get the equipment needed to broadcast a high-quality Twitch stream of my next marathon world record in April 2019. Plus, I will hopefully have enough left to help me get to the 2019 E3 Expo and TwitchCon.

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

I’m honored to be breaking boundaries for women in gaming and, most importantly, giving a voice to women in their 40s who are in competitive gaming and the Twitch community. There are very few woman my age still making their mark in video game history. This needs to change.

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

We have to continue to fight for change. I let my world records be my voice by redefining what a woman my age can achieve in endurance video gaming a.k.a. “exergaming.” During my 19-year career, I have heard it all and have been called every name you can think of. But, I never respond to my critics. Instead, I take the higher road and let my world records do the speaking for me. Every time I feel like giving up, I think of every negative thought that has been thrown at me and it inspires me to keep pushing forward.

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

Sponsorships and support… I have an incredible community that has hosted my world records, donated supplies, and volunteered their time to help me achieve my world records. But, it can cost a lot to put on these events and train properly for them. I can no longer afford to subsidize the cost of my own events, and I need help. And, unfortunately, my world records don’t get major endorsements at my age. Number of subscribers and youth both outweigh achievements in the video gaming world. But, every day, I’m still fighting for this dream to set another marathon world record at 42 years old — off a teacher’s salary!

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

Never give up on your dreams.

How do you stay motivated and focused on your goals?

Every day I see the impact that my world records have on fighting childhood obesity and promoting STEAM education in schools. As the second woman and first exergamer to be inducted into the International Video Game Hall of Fame, I am proof that barriers are being broken down — and I have to keep fighting. Plus, I have raised more than $100,000 for my local Children’s Miracle Hospitals through my world records and by going to events. These reminders along with my incredible support system push me to keep going.

Watch @CarrieSwidecki’s BroadcastHER Introduction from 1000dreamsfund on www.twitch.tv