De Licia, a digital content creator, and YouTuber is making waves in Liberia with her unique blend of storytelling skills and content creation.
Born Wally Alicia Koiwood, De Licia hails from Liberia and has made a name for herself as an international club DJ, entertainer, and brand influencer. She also served as a Liaison for the Liberian community in Vietnam and the Liberian Embassy in China.
In addition to her impressive resume, De Licia is also a YouTube vlogger who is passionate about showcasing the beauty and culture of Liberia to the world. Her videos cover a range of topics, from travel and lifestyle to music and entertainment.
The media is a vital tool in shaping and influencing people’s perception and interpretation of Africa and Africans and people of African ancestry. Studies found that Western media portray Africa as a poverty-stricken, war-ravaged, and disease-ridden continent, which also reinforces other negative stereotypes. On that note, young African digital creators like De Licia have been using social media to change the distorting narrative about the continent.
So what inspired De Licia to start vlogging about Liberia?
Speaking to The African Dream, it all started back in China where she was living. De Licia realized that a lot of Chinese and even Europeans in China and some Africans knew very little about her country Liberia. This shocking revelation led her to return to Liberia to change the narrative and showcase Liberia to the world through digital video content creation.
“After spending some time in China, I realized that there was a lot that people didn’t know about Liberia,” speaking to The African Dream.
“I wanted to use my platform to showcase the beauty of my country and to share its rich culture with the world. I want to show the world what my country has. The hidden gems, beautiful natural features, amazing landscapes, and landmarks,” she continues.
This is exactly what she’s been doing. Through her YouTube channel and Facebook page, De Licia takes her viewers on a virtual tour of Liberia, showcasing its stunning landscapes, rich history and culture, vibrant music scene, and unique fashion and cuisine.
De Licia’s authenticity is what makes her different from other digital content creators. She loves to keep it real with her audience. She told The African Dream how she normally comes up with her content: “I don’t think too much because there’s a lot of stories to tell already as my platform is mostly about Lifestyle, Travel, and Motivational Messages,” she says. “I keep it real and to the point. Most of the content I create is relatable,” she added.
But De Licia’s content isn’t just about tourism and entertainment. She also uses her platform to highlight important social issues, such as poverty and access to education. For example, in one video, she visits a local school to donate school supplies and talk to the students about the importance of education.
“My goal with my content is to not only entertain people but also to educate and inspire them,” says De Licia. “I want people to see the beauty of Liberia and to realize that there is so much more to my country than what they see in the news.”
Creating content comes with a lot of hard work and also challenges. For De Licia, her biggest challenge is getting sponsorships for her content. Speaking to The African Dream, De Licia says she wants to travel across all of Liberia’s fifteen counties, showcase the beauty of these counties and tell their rich history and vibrant culture to the world. But this doesn’t come cheap. She needs financial and logistics support to achieve her goal.
Most of her content are being sponsored by her audience, she says. “They [my audience] love and appreciate what I do. In so doing, I present a budget to them for any County I wish to travel to or most requested by them, and they chip in here and there. Sometimes I get the full amount, and sometimes I don’t, but this has been the way forward so far. Thanks to my amazing audience,” she said.
De Licia is on the verge of taking over the Liberian storytelling narratives. She hopes in the next five years of showcasing Liberia to the world, more tourists will visit the West African nation, and make Liberia famous for the best reasons.
“The darkest thing about Africa has always been our ignorance of it.” These are the words of geographer George Kimble.
Just like the Wode Maya of Ghana; Tayo Ayina of Nigeria; Liberians have gotten themselves a gem. De Licia is a true force to be reckoned with in the digital content industry. Through her educative and inspiring videos, she is inspiring people around the world to discover the beauty, history, and culture of Liberia.
When asked what would be her advice to young and up-and-coming African content creators, De Licia says: “Be passionate, be driven about your goal, be strong, keep the focus, and let’s tell our story. Social Media is the world’s biggest community where everyone meets, let’s use it to tell our story, the African story.”