What is a solidarity audit? Lessons from working as a herbalist in the refugee camps in Northern France

What is a solidarity audit? Lessons from working as a herbalist in the refugee camps in Northern France

90 minutes  

Herbalists from the UK and Ireland have volunteered as individuals in the refugee camps in Northern France since 2015. In the last two years we have operated collectively as Herbalists Without Borders Uk .We run a mobile clinic and since October 2019 have supported more that 4,000 refugees with herbal medicine treatments.

This talk will explore how this concept of a ‘solidarity audit’ enables our team of herbalist first aiders to negotiate the pitfalls and challenges presented while working with migrants in the makeshift camps. These are our questions to ourselves:

  • Are we doing our best to work in solidarity with our patients?
  • Are we doing our best work in solidarity with each other?
  • Are we doing our best to work in solidarity with other agencies and volunteers?
  • Are we doing our best to work in solidarity with our plants and our planet?

Working through this audit delivers a structure to examine best practice and aim for effectiveness, sustainability and resilience. It prompts us to understand how we fit into a wider ecology of provision and enables us to confront thorny issues around ‘white saviorism’ and dynamics of privilege; the tension between confidence and humility; issues of trauma, vicarious and otherwise. In addition this audit demands that we locate ourselves side by side with people we are supporting, and that we do so with an eye on the bigger picture in terms of geo-politics, social justice and environment.

  • Date : November 7, 2021
  • Time : 11:15 am - 01:00 pm (America/Vancouver)

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