Action-Based Herbalism in Practice Certificate Track

Action-Based Herbalism in Practice 

We believe that herbs and herbalists are much-needed catalysts for positive change in today’s world. Whether in the forest, the clinic, or the streets, herbalism is offering new models of healing to communities everywhere. Our annual gathering is dedicated to honoring and exploring the people, plants, and practices that put herbalism in action in so many diverse ways.

Herbalism is a dynamic, constantly evolving practice that grows and changes throughout time to meet the needs of the communities it serves. We now find ourselves at a point in history where the need for herbalism has never been greater. Our task is to develop new and creative ways to bring herbalism to more people. Our 28th Annual Symposium is dedicated to offering practical support, and a liberal dose of inspiration, as we work together to find more ways to provide effective, affordable, culturally appropriate herbal health care to our communities. To serve this goal, this year’s Symposium will offer the following focused educational track: Action-Based Herbalism in Practice.

Earn a certificate! Attendees who take five of the following classes in addition to the Post-Symposium Intensive will received a Certificate of Completion for the Action-Based Herblism in Practice Track. 

NEW! Earn a certificate from home. Participation in both the Core Virtual Track and the Virtual Post-Symposium Intensive qualifies participants to receive a Certificate of Completion in Action-Based Herbalism in Practice.

Solidarity in the Clinic

How can we address the imbalances in power present between practitioners and clients in a clinical setting? How can we take into account the social, cultural, and economic conditions that give rise to or exacerbate our clients’ suffering? How do we call in plants as allies in peoples’ struggle for justice and liberation? This lecture will be a theoretical and practical exploration of these core questions.

Garden Medicine: Top Herbs for Community Resilience and Emergency Preparedness

When a natural or political disaster hits, how will you take care of your own? In such situations, herbalists will be on the front lines of health care. Herbalists can prepare with medicinal gardens to bolster self sufficiency and community resilience. We’ll look at ways to prioritize herbs for planting, top herbs for the medicinal “victory garden”, and ways to prepare and organize in your community.

Cross-Cultural Perspectives on Healing: Films & Discussion

Screening of Beyond Recognition (2014), a half-hour documentary on an Indigenous woman's quest to create a land trust in the SF/Bay Area to protect her culture and sacred sites from desecration. The film will be followed by a work-in-progress sample of director Michelle Steinberg's latest film, Met(t)a, on immigrant and refugee experiences in the health care system. A facilitated audience discussion will follow to explore themes in both films in relation to the work of community herbalists.

Rebirth: Abortion and Miscarriage Care

Herbal protocols can play an important role in elective or spontaneous post-abortion regimens. Preparing ahead of time (if elective) and taking care of the body afterwards (whether spontaneous or elective) can make a huge difference in long term “reproductive” health. We will cover protocols and herbs to rebuild and heal affected tissue, support hormonal balance, and address emotional needs.

Tales from an Integrative Free Clinic: Practical Suggestions and Strategic Discussion

Since 2009, Consultas Naturistas nutrition/herbal medicine program has provided free, Spanish/English bilingual, integrative health care to low-income individuals. Founder Michelle will review their model and discuss common conditions and treatment strategies, supporting participants in bringing similar programs to their communities.

Western Herbal Medicine in Primary Care: Considerations for Practice in a Free Integrative Medical Clinic

What are the considerations for the practice of herbal medicine and clinical nutrition within a free, integrative, mobile primary care unit primarily serving the needs of the houseless, economically disadvantaged, undocumented, and other marginalized demographics? The proposed discussion will be led by members of Eugene Occupy Medical.

Healer Heal Thyself: Using Herbs, Aroma & Essences to Support Self Care

Drawing from her own experience of deep sickness and unrest after working with the Sandy Hook community, Lupo will share self-care tips and protective protocols to help insure the healer stays well throughout the journey of tending to others. She will discuss herbs, aromas, essences, and recipes for combating stress, fatigue, and emotional upheaval and promoting lasting self-care.

Herbalists & Health Freedom: The Impact of Laws and Regulations on Herbal Practices

Many states have professional occupational laws which leave practicing herbalists at risk for criminal charges of unlicensed practice. Diane educates about these laws and works to support groups that are changing these laws so that herbalists and other practitioners can have exemptions from practice acts. Learn how to become involved in protecting health freedom rights.

Managing Infection in Low-Resource Settings: Towards a Locally-Driven Model

Herbalists in underserved areas can honor both ecology and traditional healing systems. Explore intellectual property, herbal “colonialism”, and informed consent. Learn to build an herb kit with only local resources. Focusing on herbs for wounds and infection, respiratory disease, and injuries, you will leave prepared to work with respect and efficacy in almost any setting.

Creating a Community Herb Clinic - Mentoring Practitioners and Serving the People

Training herbalist in our sliding-scale family practice clinic has been profoundly inspiring.  An overview of training includes: guiding the energy for herbalists to recognize their skills, stretch beliefs, learn boundaries, formulate, make preparations in the apothecary, and gently critique and build confidence for their own practice.  Twenty-five years of running herbal clinics has taught amazing lessons and complete wonder and amazement at the versatility of people and the power of encouragement.

Plants of Protection: Guarding Against Trauma, Grief, and Discrimination with Herbal Allies

We live in a world that is not always kind, fair, or just. Over the course of human history, plants have always been a part of our quest to overcome these negative forces. In this session, we will explore the effects of trauma on the mind, body, and psyche and five classical herbs that were used to protect us from life's hardships.

Herbs for Anger, Fear, and Trauma: Prevention, First Aid, and Aftercare

Intense emotions emerge during times of political and environmental change and can lead to imbalances or increased resilience. Recognizing the vitality of intense emotions can enhance herbal protocols. Two long-term herbal action medics will share clinical experiences, case studies, and materia medica to help people heal and prevent first-hand and secondary trauma, burn-out, and persisting emotional imbalances.

Healthy Grieving Guide to Death and Dying

We’ll focus on supporting and repairing the broken heart and soul through deep loss and learn formulas and routines to guide, buttress, and reinforce a broken foundation. How we move (or don’t) through the amniotic-like fluid that clouds our being during grieving defines our health. A clinical herbalist-Ayurvedic practitioner-bodyworker-long time front-line Earth First! activist shares her perspective.

Creating an Effective Herbal First Aid Kit

Join Sam as he shares insights about herbal first aid kits based on over two decades of experience. He will cover basic formulas and simples that can be applied at home or in post-disaster environments. Sam will share insights on containers, first aid gear, packs, and best methods of herbal preservation and administration.

Opiate Cessation: A Novel Approach

Opiate overuse and abuse are serious and widespread health problems. This lecture will touch on some of the neurological, psychological, and social mechanisms through which opiate addiction self-perpetuates, then explore a novel approach to support patients who are transitioning off opiates, with the mood-stabilizing and drug-metabolizing effects of St. John’s wort.

Red Flags for Herbalists: Working with Heavy Substance Users and the Homeless

Herbalists who work with this population often encounter serious health problems that require urgent medical referral. We will review some of the most important red flags that herbalists should be able to identify and use to seek help, including universal precautions, wound infections, overdose, withdrawal syndromes, and breathing and circulatory emergencies.

Building an Herbal Oncology and Chronic Care Dispensary

Attendees will learn best practices for maintaining a quality oncology-oriented dispensary as part of a busy practice. We’ll discuss in-depth avoiding pitfalls in product selection, medicines to make, shipping, billing, record keeping, and managing costs.  Students will learn how to market to clients so they want to purchase from you, their practitioner, and how to further client-practitioner trust.

The Free Clinic Herbalist

This class will discuss what it is like to practice as an herbalist in an integrated free clinic, including stocking the apothecary, clinical skills, patient compliance, logistics, donations, tools, and working with care practitioners from other modalities. We will discuss working with patients that have not previously used herbal medicine. The goal is to inspire herbalists to do this work while covering some details and possible difficulties.

The Herbalist Street Medic

A street medic is someone who offers assistance at protests, demonstrations, encampments, and similar situations. An ‘herbal’ street medic also offers various types of herbal medicines at these events. This class will look at different ways of assessing health needs and discussing various individual herbs and formulas. This practical class is for those already helping or interested in taking part at these events.

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