October, 2018- A Month in Review
by: Brandon Curran: NOHC Marketing and Events Manager
We have been busy, y’all. After an extremely eventful October, we are thrilled to look back and see the wide-range of groups, events and happenings throughout our Healing Center space that allow us to continue to grow and develop as the true hub for community. We continue to try to develop programming and events that fit our three main commitments; Public & Community Health, Local Arts & Culture and Diversity & Inclusion. A snapshot of these different happenings are laid out below!
Public & Community Health
The Healing Center welcomed Black Birth Matters into our space to host day-long public health conference. Inspired by both the #BlackLivesMatter movement and Midwife Ina May Gaskin’s “Birth Matters” mantra, the day-long conference featured a series of workshops, panel discussions, open dialogue, art, and healing on issues at the intersections of birth and social justice.
In addition, we just welcomed our newest Silo, Seed Restaurant, to the Healing Center. Growing from their inaugural uptown location, Seed St. Claude will feature affordable vegan and plant-based dishes. We are excited to see this establishment become a part of the growing St. Claude restaurant scene while continuing to partner with The Healing Center for our programs and events.
Finally, October was our final month for our Voter Registration drive. Over the course of 10 weeks, The Healing Center successfully registered 92 voters, informed many community members about their polling location and served as a general hub for voter information. We are excited that our first year of voter registration was such a huge hit and we are excited to develop it for future years.
Local Arts & Culture
In its 38th year, La Source Ancienne Ounfo, a New Orleans based Vodou society, in partnership with the New Orleans Healing Center, celebrated the Day of the Dead/Fet Gede with a Vodou ceremony to invoke the Gede. The Days of the Dead coincides with “Fet Gede,” the festival for the Gede, a family of Haitian Vodou spirits, who are the patrons of the Dead. The entire month of November is dedicated to his celebrations in Haiti, but he is especially honored with ceremonies during the first days of the month. This free celebration also included a Day of The Dead Market, over a dozen interfaith altars, a community potluck and more. 2018 marked the second year of brining this celebration through the doors and we were thrilled to see the event grow in activity and attendees.
Piety Street Market- a well-known community market in The Bywater- relaunched in The Healing Center as Piety in Exile Market. This monthly market features 50+ vendors offering a wide array of creative art, handmade jewelry and crafts, homemade goodies, vintage clothes & collectibles, used books and flea market finds in a bustling neighborhood setting. This event helps the livelihoods of dozens of local artisans while growing The Healing Center as a hub for cultural and economic activity
Additionally, Cree Mcree’s Halloween Bootique returned to The Healing Center with an assortment of handmade costumes, headpieces, vintage clothing and more. It was very fun to watch the community come out and get into the Halloween spirit.
Lastly, PhotoNOLA’s World Cyanotype Flag Day took over The Healing Center Grand Hall for a free workshop to allow community members to come out and make their own Cyantotype Flags. Patrons could either keep their own or allow PhotoNOLA to hang them in The Healing Center for the month of December.
Diversity & Inclusion
The Moth is a national program located at Café Istanbul that brings together local communities to listen to and share personal stories about various topics. This month’s topic was on beating expectations and attendees could hear stories from a wide-array of backgrounds and how they handled beating expectations from their surroundings. The Healing Center is proud to continue to support Café Istanbul and the wide-range of community programming they bring to the center.