Movement Strategy Center Celebrates Ten Years of Healing Clinic Collective

Celebrating a decade of unwavering commitment to community health and healing, the Healing Clinic Collective (HCC) marks its tenth anniversary with a sense of accomplishment and purpose. Since its inception, HCC has been a beacon of hope and support for communities, offering accessible healing services that embody a deep respect for cultural traditions and holistic practices. 

As HCC commemorates this significant milestone, we not only celebrate their ten years of service and solidarity but also reflect on a journey characterized by learning, transition, and the relentless pursuit of health equity. Their upcoming anniversary event will not only be a celebration but a testament to HCC’s enduring mission of fostering healing, power building, and the wellbeing of all individuals, regardless of their socioeconomic status. 

Emceeing the anniversary’s festivities is Susana Cáceres, resource mobilizer, coach, consultant, and founder of CipotaVoz Strategies.

On Saturday, October 14, 2023, the Humanist Hall in Oakland, CA will open its doors for an evening that mirrors the spirit and dynamism of the HCC community, offering a blend of the sacred and the political, epitomizing the organization’s values and journey. Situated at 411 28th Street, the Hall will welcome a vibrant congregation of HCC network volunteers, practitioners, and other invaluable members of the broader HCC community, along with collaborators and those dedicated to the cause of healing justice.

Emceeing the event is the dynamic Susana Cáceres, founder of CipotaVoz Strategies. With a 30-year legacy in nonprofits, Cáceres champions financial liberation for queer and trans BIPOC organizations in the U.S. and Latin America. From El Salvador, she’s not just a resource mobilizer but also a bruja singer and advocate of self love and abundance.

Guest speaker Gopal Dayaneni, co-founder of Movement Generation, is dedicated to fostering transformative change through grassroots movements that embody the resilience and wisdom of living systems.

The evening will commence with an opening circle and libations to set the mood. Attendees will engage in herb bundle crafting, enjoy family friendly zones, and relax by an open fire. Energizing music will lead up to the highlight — a mesmerizing performance of Mexica danzantes, embodying collective gratitude and aspirations.

Entry is free, but generous donations to support HCC’s cause are welcome. The venue ensures accessibility and caters to diverse dietary needs. In these times, the health of attendees is paramount, hence, HCC has laid out clear COVID-19 guidelines for guests to follow.

Maria Jose Montijo, or “Esoterica Tropical,” blends deep rooted healing practices with her captivating harp infused melodies. A cherished acupuncturist within the HCC network, her music is a journey from Puerto Rico's shores to the heart of holistic wellness.

A Decade of Holistic Healing with HCC

The Healing Clinic Collective (HCC) has been a beacon of holistic wellbeing and community engagement since its inception. Holding the distinction of being one of the first healing clinics, HCC proudly paved the way but rejoices in not being the last. Over the years, they’ve closely watched and celebrated the birth of 25 similar projects inspired by their blueprint.

One such project is SanArte Healing & Cultura Clinic. Vanessa Quezada, Pharm.D., shares her congratulations to HCC: “thank you for providing the guidance, support, and care needed for us to create community clinics in Yanaguana (San Antonio, TX) that later became SanArte Healing & Cultura Clinic. The handbook you all created saved us countless hours of paperwork. We felt solid support for us to contextualize the work within our community. Your work ripples deep and wide, and we are so grateful for your corazones!”

This exemplifies a spirit of collaboration rather than competition. Carla María Pérez, a co-founder, core member, and lead coordinator at HCC, emphasizes, “competitiveness between projects is not healing at all.” Recognizing the diverse needs of individuals on their healing paths, Pérez noted, “HCC might not be the best starting point for some. They might feel more at home in an integrated clinic with both nurses and healers.”

"Our prayers were heard for what we intended this project to do and the impact we wanted to have. We planted a seed."

HCC has always embodied respect and engagement with ancestral healing modalities — a collective vision where healers are deeply rooted in ancestral healing and anti-oppression principles, championing causes spanning from social justice to queer rights and disability justice. In Pérez’s words, it’s about fostering “awareness, reverence, and respect.”

Guest speaker Dr. Rupa Marya, a distinguished physician, activist, and University of California, San Francisco professor, will be a guest speaker. Championing the intersections of health, racial justice, and the environment, she founded the Deep Medicine Circle to heal colonialism's legacy.

Within its core, HCC is more than a mere healing initiative, it’s a vibrant drive to reignite a sacred, holistic relationship with oneself, fostering a space where over 130 dedicated healers and wellness practitioners thrive and contribute significantly. Anchored in commitments to ancestral healing, cultural love, interconnectedness, and diligent stewardship of the earth, HCC crafts a tapestry of healing that goes beyond the individual, weaving a resilient, loving community that honors the past while nurturing the future.

The HCC Organizing Committee at the Fall 2021 Divine & Deserving TLGBTQIA+2S (Trans and Gender Nonconforming two-Spirit) Healing Clinic.

The spiritual backbone of HCC is prayer. Traditional prayer ceremonies are not mere rituals but essential foundations that guide and support every action taken by the collective. These prayers, imbued with depth and intention, span a range of emotions, aspirations, and hopes, often extending beyond set durations to envelop the organization’s endeavors in a protective, nurturing cocoon of spirituality. Pérez is “so grateful that our prayers were heard for what we intended this project to do and the impact we wanted to have. We planted a seed” and fostered healing. Through these solemn prayers, the collective connects, heals, and grows, ensuring that every step forward is rooted in sacred intention.

This is especially vital for traumatized communities in the Bay Area, where the effects of modern life can sometimes overshadow the grounding, healing practices of our ancestors. Through their consultations and offerings, HCC helps communities reconnect with practices that nourish the spirit and restore balance.

Looking back on a decade of dedication, the HCC journey is painted with lessons learned and countless achievements — including developing blueprints for healing circles and healing-centered political education and hosting and maintaining a network of ancestral and natural healers for herbal rapid crisis response including during the height of COVID-19 pandemic. It’s been a journey of community building, spiritual growth, and unyielding commitment to the sacred tenets of holistic wellbeing. As we reflect on the past, we also cast hopeful eyes towards the future, envisioning a world where HCC’s principles touch more lives, heal deeper wounds, and create stronger communal bonds.

We invite our Beloved Community to reflect with us: share your transformative tales and moments linked to HCC in the comments below. 

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