Out of the many places her wandering heart has taken her, digital nomad Wanda Duncan felt the need to create a safe space for women like her. Traveling the world as a Black woman has its challenges, and for solo travelers like Duncan, it can be hard to find a community to relate to and connect with.
Duncan has been traveling from Ireland to Thailand to Malaysia for the past six years and with intention. Her path to digital nomadism wasn’t always on the straight and narrow. From leaving her job at CNN to moving to El-Salvador, Duncan used her experiences to prepare for living abroad full-time. Since New Year’s Day 2016, she has not set foot back into the US.
Duncan knew digital nomadism was the life she wanted for herself, but amid the amazing adventures, she set out to build a community of Black entrepreneurs and digital nomads.
In 2017, Duncan took her efforts to Facebook and created a group that would eventually grow exponentially in four years.
“I saw a couple of other Black women who were out like myself who were creating their own income and traveling how they wanted to, and I said, ‘I don’t see that there’s a space for us,” Duncan tells AFAR Magazine. “‘I’d like to create that.’”
Let’s say the rest is history.
Now thriving with over 2,400 members, the Black Women Digital Nomad Entrepreneurs group is dedicated to helping women travel better, longer, and make money online. This diverse community of women includes those who work traditional 9-to-5 jobs and love travel, while others are aspiring business owners and own online businesses. Duncan invites conversations in the group about relevant topics that impact Black women, travelers, digital nomads, entrepreneurs, and online business owners.
The Black Women Travel Podcast was born in the summer of 2019 and was created to bring voices to the conversations had in the group. Every Sunday, in a new episode, Duncan and her guests explore the stories of Black women from diverse backgrounds and discuss all that it means to be a Black woman entrepreneur on the go.
Mental health has been highly emphasized on the podcast, such as in recent episodes entitled “How to Nurture a Trusting Relationship With Yourself” and “How to Believe in Yourself and Get What You Want.” Duncan always aims to provide a space that fosters empathy and compassion for the women, considering the ongoing challenges listeners can relate to.
In addition to the podcast, Duncan organized the International Black Women Travel Jubilee, a conference for women to socialize and connect with fellow entrepreneurs, ex-pats, content creators, and influencers. This past December, she held the second annual jubilee and introduced the first-ever Black Women Travel Awards.
Duncan is currently home-basing outside of Tirana, Albania.