On June 29, 2018, the Rise with Self-KARE Workshop took place in a room at the Fruitridge Community Collaborative. “Rise”, coming from the small organization’s name, Girls on the Rise of South Sacramento, provides a space for young high school age girls of color to work in leadership throughout the community and is run by Jaelyn Singleton. Singleton also was the coordinator of this workshop in which attendees learned how to use natural herbs, writing, and music to heal and help and take care of themselves.

The air was filled with a balance of incense and music and the room was split into two. One side held a short writing workshop about how writing can be self-care and should be done every day, while the other side was how to bind herbs into bundles, in order to use their aroma to help with self-care.

The writing workshop started off with a short introduction into how one can benefit from writing and the idea of a writing technique called “stream of consciousness.” In a literary sense, this means taking whatever comes to mind and writing it down. It is a simple way for one to express whatever they are feeling that one might not have even known they were thinking about and to help one understand what is truly going on their lives while keeping them emotionally stable. The herb workshop taught participants how to wrap herbs and how their aromas can help calm oneself. Participants wrapped sage, rosemary, and lavender for a simple yet effective bundle. Participants seemed very appreciative of a space to learn more about themselves.

“At this workshop, I learned that I tend to bottle up all my emotions and that isn’t healthy,” said workshop participant Phayth Jessie. “That’s how I cope for now, but I hope to work on this.”

Jessie also felt that this was not only a good space for self-enlightenment but a good place to be surrounded by others that are like minded.

“I don’t have the healthiest version of self-care,” Jessie shared. “I prefer to stay secluded. I don’t really like going out. I like staying in my room and just, like, watching anime.” Despite her shyness, Jessie said she was grateful for the experience.

At the end of the night, hugs and thanks were all around, and the participants agreed, Rise with Self-KARE was truly a success.