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A Noob's Journey on Twitch

Hi! I’m DncingRetsuko, or as my friends call me, Rets. Since you’re reading this I can already tell we’re going to be friends, so go ahead and call me Rets ^_^.


I’m here to tell you a meet-cute story of the non-romantic variety: the story of how I met KKR!


But before I can tell you about how I met KKR, let me tell you about how I got started on Twitch.


My Discovery of Twitch

One day in October 2020, I was chatting with a coworker and I shared that I’d bought a new gaming chair and gaming computer back in March when I was worried we’d have to work from home. In our particular industry we didn’t end up working from home, but that didn’t stop me from enjoying my new computer.


“Oh my gosh,” she said. “Are you a streamer?”


“What the heck is a streamer?” I responded, with a blank look on my face.


She laughed at me (how embarrassing) and responded: “You know, someone who plays games and people throw money at them!”


Why on Earth would someone do that? I thought to myself. At this point I was already super embarrassed at my lack of being in touch with current trends, so we quickly changed the topic.


After I went home, her question stuck with me. I asked my husband if he knew what a streamer was (he did, and he laughed at me too). I went over to my computer and started Googling, lest anyone else laugh at me.


Almost immediately, I stumbled across Extra Life. Extra Life is a way for gamers to raise money for their local Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. Similar to raising money for a walk or a run, gamers can play games and ask for donations. During the pandemic, more and more gamers were taking to Twitch or YouTube to fundraise.


Photo credit: The_Beckiest


This was a concept that completely resonated with me. I had finally found a way to turn my time at home on the weekends into something useful.


With less than a month to prepare, my husband and I gathered equipment, downloaded software, and did our first “real” live stream on November 7th, 2020 as part of Extra Life’s National Game Day.


I had some experience already with online gaming communities, although all of my experience was only with text chats. At this point, I hadn’t even played any games with voice chats so I was pretty nervous about talking in front of people.


Nevertheless, for 24 straight hours, we played games in front of friends and family, all while raising money for Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. It was a terrifying but exhilarating day, and the pride after we were done was immeasurable.


Photo Credit: Kato


KKR, My Gateway Drug

Enough about me; we’re here to talk about KKR and how I met him, right?


Well, to be honest, I lied about this being a meet-cute story. Our meeting was pretty basic - I was simply looking on Twitch to find what other Extra Life streamers do, and lo-and-behold, I found KKR playing the same game that I had been streaming earlier.


Remember that at this point, I didn’t know anyone else on Twitch. I still barely understood Twitch etiquette, and I was horrified by this concept of networking for growth.


When I entered KKR’s chat, I posted a timid “hello”. Now, granted, this was with text only so he couldn’t tell how nervous I felt. I’d tried this with a few other streamers, but they usually didn’t respond and I’d grow bored and leave.


KKR immediately greeted me by name, with no mispronunciations!! He asked me how I found his channel, and when he saw I was also fundraising for Extra Life, he immediately posted a shout-out for me in his chat.


This guy, this totally chill streamer who knew nothing about me, was kind enough to take an interest in me after having known me for less than 5 minutes.


Well, that was all it took. For months, I was so nervous to do another stream myself. Watching and chatting with KKR gave me the confidence to stream more, and eventually, I grew more relaxed.


Photo credit: TeeTurtle


During one recent stream, I called KKR my “gateway drug”. Now, why on Earth would I use such a term for such a wholesome man?


Well, it’s because KKR opened my eyes and got me hooked on finding ways to utilize Twitch to further my fundraising.


He showed me how to engage my viewers through exciting games to encourage audience participation. He shared creative ideas to incentivize people to donate. It turns out people on Twitch love to punish their streamers, and they’ll throw vast amounts of money at you to watch you eat a disgusting-flavored jelly bean.


We’ve known each other for less than a year, and yet we’ve accomplished so much in such a short amount of time. With KKR’s support, the Rex Streaming Fam Discord server (named after my lovely dog) has flourished as a caring and supportive community.



Twitch Fundraising, My Addiction

Alright, so “addiction” is probably not the best word to use here, but I’m pretty darn hooked on utilizing Twitch for fundraising now. Since I started in October 2020, I’ve already done three fundraisers and I’m preparing to launch my fourth and biggest yet.


Last year I raised $1685 for Extra Life, which is pretty crazy considering I’d just gotten started and had no idea what I was doing!


This year I am participating in Extra Life again, and by the time my birthday in April came around, we’d already reached my year’s goal of $2021. I’ve since raised my goal to $3000 and it’s looking like I’ll need to raise it again.


Additionally, over this past summer, my husband and I raised money for an adaptive sports program that has been a tremendous support to our family and his disabled brother. We raised $1846 by riding 160 miles over 7 days. We streamed all of our cycling on Twitch, with half of those days being from a stationary bike at home. The remainder of the days we did “IRL” (in real life) with just my cell phone!



Next year I am gearing up to fundraise for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, leading a team that will raise a whopping goal of $100,000 over a ten-week period through a mix of IRL and streamed events. Can we do it? I have no idea, but I am super pumped to try it.


Start Your Own Twitch Fundraiser

As I said at the beginning of this post, I could tell already we’d become great friends. I am so excited to see how you use this platform for good and to help make the world a better place to live in. Every dollar counts, and you’re taking the first step towards doing something amazing.


If you’re like me and you’re new to the world of live streaming, I highly recommend you reach out to KKR (or Marc, as you know him) and utilize his experience to help create your fundraiser. His experience and creativity were tantamount in helping me grow my own channel, and I continue to learn from him and other awesome streamers every time that I log on.



DncingRetsuko is a freelance writer and content creator. She has been streaming on Twitch since October 2020 where she raises funds for Extra Life and other charitable organizations. You can find her at https://www.instagram.com/dncingretsuko


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