31 Days of Dreamers & Doers | Felicia Webster
Opening up our first month of Dreamers and Doers is none other than Miss WithLoveFelicia, Ted Talk speaker, multifaceted creative and educational entrepreneur and momma Felicia Webster.
Miss Felicia is involved in creative arts, education, empowerment, event planning and hosting. She also implements a nice blend of entertainment and education - ‘Edutainment', a phrase coined by KRS1 meaning to use the platform of entertainment to also educate.
‘As a creative, I am contracted by different organizations/conferences to give workshops in the arts that include the following: spoken word poetry, drama, movement, girl & women empowerment workshops, hosting and some mixed media genres.’
Also in this role, Felicia plans events in which she may act/perform or host and is often hired to create/co-create events doing the same for others.
She has an impressive list of staple events where she works with others who are passionate about what they do in the world:
The WORD - a live jazz infused poetry open mic
Love Down Below - a love variety show (live music, poetry, relationship education)
The Release - a creative arts women's conference that encourages self care through artistic expression
abuse is not LOVE -a spoken word play about the cycle of abuse and the journey to healing
Black Queen Magic Sip & Create - a creative arts space that inspires sistarhood through different artistic mediums while exposing black women to other black women artists in our commUNITY
VeRBaL GuMBo - an annual celebration co-created and hosted with Michelle Troxclair to provide a platform for wordsmith and lovers of language, music and the arts to share their creations
Love After Dark - Radio show consisting of slow jams, love letters and relationship talk on 101.3fm Mind and Soul
As an educator, Felicia is a substitute teacher for OPS and she’s just finished a long term sub position in Pre-Algebra (Ahhhhhh yes, she loves mathematics, too). She also conducts continuous workshops for various organizations and community agencies that oftentimes request a combination of her passions for the creative arts and education such as:
How to use the creative arts in a classroom
Elevating stress with the arts
Self Care & Vision Boards
"I get to show up in the world and exude love through serving my community, empowering girls/women and creating platforms for others to shine. Doing The Most High's work through the gifts I've been granted, knowing my ancestors are pleased by the work I do for my people publicly and privately - I get to be a testimony for others."
I asked Felicia a series of questions about her journey to where she is today and became intrigued about her notion of constant alignment throughout her life.
FW: I'd be remiss if I did not acknowledge a family tree that enjoyed the arts and music along with a passion for education on my mother and father's side.
I was surrounded by an attitude of hard work from my parents who also loved music and entertainment. It was important to be in church plays and school events. I took a variety of lessons in music, even though I didn't stick with any of them, they carved your passion for music and entertainment, giving me a higher regard for musicians and singers. Being exposed to music influenced my life.
In terms of education, my mother was an educator of children and people with different needs, which is where the love of educating others and having compassion for individual difference came from. My father, a retired electrician, is where that mathematical passion manifested.
Just as equally important to me, was knowing and understanding the his/herstory of my people and this journey began at home with my parents and the stories I listened to through other family members. Giving back was instilled into my spirit, as I was encouraged to be apart of the youth chapter of the NAACP and Black Achievers along with my own self study that eventually attracted other like minded friends. Giving back to my community was apart of my life's work. So, by the time I graduated from high school, I co-wrote and performed in black his/herstories programs, organized a group I co-founded - The United Black Front (taken from the original oirganization birthed out of the 1950s). I fought for equity and equality for the fair treatment of black students, along with protesting to gain black history classes to be taught in OPS.
“Funny thing is I've always done this work, because I was blessed to have divine right people in my life from a young age able to see my gifts and support me in honing them in the world. Every "job' I had was in preparation for what I would be doing on my own. Each "job" I had was in some way, shape or form connected to education, community, girls/women, entertainment and the creative arts.”
Honestly, everything I have ever did aligned in divine order for me to be right here. My first black teacher instilled into me the importance of loving words and reading. In junior high/middle school, my first black counselor encouraged me and lovingly nudged me to express my gifts through talents shows, writing and even winning the ACTSO for the division of poetry where I competed nationally. I mentioned before my passion for understanding and standing up for the TRUTH around the his/herstory of my community. It was also in high school I began advocating for my girlfriends who had suboptimal experiences with sexual assault and domestic violence, only to have experienced sexual assault myself and these journeys led me to the path I am on now.
After high school, my experiences on the East Coast - where I traveled for love and education - shaped my hustling spirit through the arts and different life experiences. I am ever grateful for the shoulders I stood on then and am able to stand on now. Friends, family, my sistarhood and soul family (people I've been able to choose in life with similar vibrations), although there are too many to name, I am ever so blessed by their presence in my life.
AK: Ten years ago, would you have pictured yourself where you are today?
“Yes. Spirit whispered in my ear my purpose at a young age and I have been positioned ever since.”
Having paved the way for many young creatives, educators and dreamers, you can bet that many of your peers have been mentored as well as inspired by Felicia. It makes her feel good to be able to make others feel encouraged, healed, connected to their inner magic and others who vibrate on the same frequency and Loved, even if its tough love. She wants one to feel compelled to manifest their own gifts in the world and know they are supported in doing so.
You can see more of Miss Felicia at her site, www.withlovefelicia.weebly.com. In closing, she urges you to remember: “A car can't run without gas, don't forget to fill up and take care of yourself on the journey.”