To recognize this Independence Day and #herbalwisdomwednesday, we wanted to recognize some amazing groups doing great work and healing with Community Herbalism. Being plant and herb lovers, we believe they offer so much in the way of physical, cultural and community healing and we are awed and inspired by those groups working to bring plant healing to the people.
You might be unfamiliar with what Community Herbalism means, and it can have different meanings to different people, but we like what local herbalist and educator 7Song of the Northeast School of Botanical Medicine defines it as:
“Attributes of a Community-Based Herbalist
1) Availability 2) Accessibility 3) Skills 4) Education 5) Networking”.
Essentially, a community herbalist must be available and accessible to the community. They must have the skills needed to perform the work. They must be forthcoming and generous with their knowledge and educate the people so that they feel self-empowered about their health. And they must create networks with other healers and groups working to better their community.
One of the first groups we think of is Herbalists Without Borders, a nonprofit organization who aims to bring health justice and humanitarian aid to disenfranchised communities. Across the globe, they have worked to support herbalists from many backgrounds to do great work via clinics, community gardens, seed banks and much more. For more info, check them out at http://herbalistswithoutborders.weebly.com/
In addition to individual herbalists offering community clinics, we have the Eureka Community Herbal Self-Care Clinic. Their goal is to provide consultations, share herbal wisdom and provide healing remedies to those in the community who may not have access and/or opportunity for regular health care. Learn more at https://www.riseupgoodwitch.com/freeherbalclinic
It is also important to note that what we might call ancestral herbalism has seen an upsurge in connection with “community” herbalism. Now this term can apply to many, many kinds of ancestral groups from Tibetan, Celtic, Scandinavian, African, Native American and countless others, but for historically disenfranchised and colonized groups it can have more empowering ramifications within their communities. It is reaffirming the traditional plant knowledge and the spirit behind that knowledge that connects us to our ancestral past so that we might view our path to a more inclusive future more fully and with more clarity. Most of us have some sort of mixed ancestral background, we know, so investigate it all and see what resonates with what you feel is the right practice for you!
*We understand that this is by no means a complete or exhaustive examination of either community herbalism or ancestral herbalism. We just wanted to give you a glimpse into these timely and important topics as ways we as herbalists can get involved in empowering and positive ways.
#moonriseherbs #communityherbalism #ancestralherbalism #herbalistswithoutborders #getinvolved #plantwisdom #traditionalwisdom #herbalwisdom #plantsempowerpeople