Women Healers of the World: The Tradition, History and Geography of Herbal Medicine

Tuesday, December 9, 2014 @ 7:30 p.m, First Parish Meeting House, 50 Cochituate Road, Wayland.  Speaker: Holly Bellebuono, award-winning herbalist and author, will take an insightful look at today’s women scientists, healers and researchers who are pulling from a core heritage of experience and sharing their knowledge with their communities. Their commonality is that they work with plants and they are profound influences on the changing face of world medicine.

After teaching herbal medicine for two decades, Holly spent 7 years traveling and learning from women all over the globe, whose work with plants carries on a centuries-old tradition of healing. Holly discovered more than 31 healers from 20 countries, including: Zoubida Charrouf, a Moroccan chemist, who saved an at-risk native tree while she created the country’s first women’s business cooperatives, pulling women out of poverty; Peru’s orphanage founder Mama Kia, who rescued more than 30 children from the streets and adopted them as her own, expanding her services to the Cuzco community with soup kitchens, classes, and an entrepreneurial center; the Zapotecan shaman Dona Enriqueta, whose midwifery skills saved the lives of more than 2,000 rural mothers and babies over her 60-year career.

Holly’s journey to document these community activists, pharmacists, ethnobotanists and physicians is relevant in a fast-paced world of science: “These women are profound influences on the changing face of world medicine. Our technology is advancing quickly, but people are still subject to on-the-ground diseases, life transitions, pain, and changing relationships. Technology is helpful but limited; whereas, these women address life’s most important issues with humor, advocacy, and a reliance on Self and Nature.”

We invite the experienced herbalist, the medical professional, as well as the average lay-person who wants to gain a richer and deeper understanding of how contemporary scientists and healers are approaching medicine from a perspective of heritage and contributing to their communities around the world.