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Tony Hawk gamer will play 24 hours to annoy anti-trans politician

Tony Hawk gamer will play 24 hours to annoy anti-trans politician

a chubby man with a beard sitting at a chair talking to a camera. next to him is a desk with a computer screen that has headphones hanging over it

An Australian gamer hopes to follow in the footsteps of his contemporary and will live stream himself playing video games for 24 hours straight to raise money for a trans organization.

Harrison Engstrom wants to emulate the success of Harry Bromis, who in January raised more $340,000 of UK charity Mermaids. Better known by his gamer name, hbomberguy, Bromis live streamed himself playing Donkey Kong for 58 hours and raised the hundreds of thousands for the charity that supports gender-diverse and trans young people.

‘At the start of this year, I committed to becoming a better person,’ Engstrom told Gay Star News.

‘I really want to help people.’

Engstrom will play the first six games in skateboarder Tony Hawk’s video game series on the streaming service, Twitch. He’ll play for 24 hours straight – or longer if the stream is popular – and donate all money raised to the organisation, Parents of Gender Diverse Children Australia (PGDC).

PGDC exists to provide support, information, resources and advocacy for Australian parents and professionals. They welcomed Engstrom’s efforts.

‘We are thrilled to be a part of this. Anything that raises awareness for transgender and non binary people is always a good thing,’ PGDC founders, Megan McDonald and Karyn Walker.

‘Whatever money is raised tonight goes directly to support our parents across Australia. We can’t thank Harrison enough for their amazing effort in getting this off the ground but also pulling an all-nighter.’

#FarkMark

Much like hbomberguy, Engstrom is using the live stream to ‘spite’ a high profile public transphobe. In the case of hbomberguy, he wanted to send a message to TV writer Graham Linehan.

But Engstrom would also like to spite former federal opposition leader Mark Latham.

‘He used to be the head of the Labor Party. He was someone I used to look up to and thought was noble and bipartisan.’

But in the past 12 years, Latham has been on Engstrom’s ‘radar’ for shifting his political views and becoming outspoken about many issues, including LGBTI rights. Latham announced he would run for conservative, anti-gay and migration party, One Nation. This month he announced a list of anti-trans policies, including banning children from transitioning at school without permission from a doctor.

Running under the hashtag, #FarkMark, Engstrom wants to send a message that support for trans people far outweighs public support for Latham.

‘I want to support trans people because it’s so important to let them have a voice rather than spewing offensive and horrible rhetoric,’ Engstrom said.

Eat the lamington, Harrison

Engstrom hoped to raise a few hundred dollars but already managed to get AU$550 (US$399) in the first 30 minutes of the stream. He has promised to throw in $200 of his own money.

Engstrom will also eat an entire lamington cake on camera if he raises AU$1,000 (US$726).

A lamington is an Australian cake made from layers of sponge cake with either cream or strawberry jam in the middle. Lamingtons are coated in chocolate and desiccated coconut.

Aside from raising funds for PDGC, Engstrom wants to show how it easy it is to make a difference.

‘If you want to stand up and help people you should do that and do it all takes,’ he said.

‘I organized all of this over Facebook messenger and three emails. The social media you use everyday can change lives.’