Call out for support for new local Herbalists without Borders Chapter in Bristol

Below is a call out from a new chapter of Herbalists without Borders in Bristol.

I will be growing and making medicines for the clinic. Help is needed – please drop me an email at if you can potentially come down to Somerset to help. I need support in harvesting and drying plants and making basic medicines. Any donations of vodka/oil or other medicine mediums are welcome, likewise an additional dehydrator would be great.

More details about the Bristol project below:

4141472This is a call out for any volunteers who are interested in being involved in our new project: Herbalists without Borders Migrant Support Clinic in Bristol. We are looking for people to help grow herbs, harvest and process them, and any clinical herbalists who want to be involved. The link is to the US website but we are currently setting up a UK website with another London based herbalist, Melissa Ronaldson, who is making links with Hummingbird Project- Calais and Dunkirk – Aid and Solidarity.

Herbalists without Borders in Bristol is a recently set up collaboration between herb growers and clinical herbalists to provide free herbal healthcare for migrants. At the moment this involves Rhizome Community Herbal Clinic and the Asylum Seekers Allotment Project.

This project is affiliated to the UK chapter, which we have just established with other UK herbalists, and is part of the international organisation Herbalist without Borders. This is a non-profit local to global network of volunteers devoted to aiding communities and countries in need impacted by natural disasters, violent conflicts, poverty, trauma or other access barriers to health and wellness.

At the moment Becs Griffiths and Annwen Jones, as part of Rhizome have set up the migrant support clinic within their own existing clinic, and are providing free herbal healthcare to a small number of migrants. Emmy Broughton and Derella Runcie from the Asylum Seekers Allotment Project are beginning to grow the herbs this year.

As this collaboration develops, and the project grows, we want to make connections with other local herbalists and herb growers to make the project more sustainable.

We want to encourage volunteers to be involved in growing herbs, and harvesting and processing wild herbs so that they can be prescribed in the clinic. The idea is to create a holistic approach to healthcare so that volunteers and migrants could be involved in several stages of the project, from growing, harvesting and learning how to use the herbs. We eventually want to run basic self-care workshops which help with improving general health alongside, if necessary, individual herbal consultations with the clinical herbalists. This vision acknowledges that being part of a herbal growing project, making a connection to the local natural environment, and learning the tools of self-care are an important part in improving health and wellbeing.

Setting up the clinic is a deeply rooted act of resistance against an unjust global political system that has created such unjust borders, as well as this government’s introduction of the new immigration bill which further isolates migrants. We believe that herbal medicine is an important part of any healthcare system and can have profound effects.

This is a call out for volunteers who want to be involved in the growing side of the project, or harvesting and processing of the herbs, and to other clinical herbalists who will see migrants within their already existing practise. If you are interested in being involved in this project please email us and we will set up a meeting in the next 2 weeks where as many people interested can attend. Please email:

We look forward to hearing from those of you interested in joining this project,
Herbalists without Borders, Bristol

Don’t miss the Radical Herbalism Gathering 2016


We hosted the first Radical Herbalism Gathering in Somerset in 2013, and I was part of the collective for two years. Unfortunately I had to take a step back to focus on anti-prison organising.

This event is probably my favourite in the whole year. It’s an incredible gathering of herbalists, healers, plant geeks and politicos. If there is any change you can make it to the gathering, then do it!

Find the details of the workshops that will be running in 2016 here.

For more info and to book visit:

Earth First Summer Gathering

Don’t miss this year’s Earth First Summer Gathering in the UK. Five days of skill sharing for grassroots ecological direct action – make links, share ideas and get involved in the struggles against fracking, new roads and more.

For full details visit:


Sharing Skills in Food Storage, Harvesting & Preserving

This Autumn, Feed Avalon organised a series of short workshops on harvesting, preserving and storing food.

Participants learned how to bottle fruit and vegetables, experimented with fermentation techniques and more. As part of a day long Winter Food Storage course, learners explored how to make clamps, store vegetables in sand and safe freezing techniques. There were also practical workshops on jam and chutney making.

If you are interested in participating in the course next year, please email

For more upcoming courses in 2015 visit:

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Radical Herbalism Gathering 2014

‘Rad’ in latin means root. This summer more than 200 people gathered at a community in Shropshire to explore the roots of health injustice in the UK at the second Radical Herbalism Gathering from the 7-8th June.

The gathering acted as a honey pot to community organisers, herbalists, healthcare practitioners, campaigners, radical midwives and more, who share an attraction to the political workshops and conversations calling for social change.

This year’s gathering was centred on four themes. The first strand was radical approaches to health. Exploring holistic approaches to mental health, Rufus May and Elisabeth Svanholmber encouraged us to look at different ways to understand emotional and thinking problems and ways to address them. Rather than seeking to suppress or get rid of depressive or psychotic states, they questioned how we can work with them in communities to learn and grow through them. Radical midwife Morag Forbes, and soul midwife Delphine MacMillian shared their experiences relating to supporting passages of birth and death, and how we can do this in more holistic ways than our western culture allows. Herbalists, Karen Lawton and Fiona Heckels took attendees on a journey through the use of psychotropic medicine and its historical repression, and Nathan Hughes explored bodywork and intuitive herbal medicine.

The second strand explored ecological justice and the sustainability of industrial medicine and herbal medicine. Melissa Ronaldson spoke about the implications of anti-biotic resistance, others talked about food politics and Dawn Ireland also reminded us about the importance of native herbs.

“There are political and social reasons why compromised and damaged health, as well as health inequalities, exist in the UK and globally,” says Becs Griffths, herbalist and gathering organiser.

The complexities of health and social justice were a core strand, giving a voice to Herbalists Against Fracking during a workshop exploring the health implications of unconventional gas. There were also spaces to talk about global corporate violence to indigenous land and medicine, as well as mutual aid within the herbal world.

“We believe that healthcare is a right, not a privilege and should be accessible to all people regardless of their ethnicity, culture, nationality, economic class, sexual identity, gender or age. Radical herbalism commits to dismantling barriers that stand in the way of this access,” says herbalist and gathering organiser, Heather Ware. This is why organisers from Bristol Refugee Rights spoke so passionately about migrant solidarity and upcoming changes in the law that threatens access to healthcare.

Practical herbal medicine was the remaining strand, where people shared skills about medicine making and learnt plant identification through the multiple herb walks around the grounds of the Crabapple Community, where the gathering was held.

With travel and ticket bursaries, sliding scale donations and child activities, the gathering aimed to be as accessible as possible. The seeds were sown for a growing movement of people passionate about health, determined to challenge capitalism and the roots of social and ecological injustice, sharing an inner knowing that plants can play a role in collective liberation.

For more information about the gathering visit:

Rad Herb 2015

The Earth First! Summer Gathering

The Earth First! Summer Gathering is an annual camp for people involved in radical green direct action to come together, to talk, share skills, learn, listen, play, rant, find out whats going on, scheme, live outdoors, hang out, laugh, experience non hierarchical, low impact, family friendly living.

The year the gathering will be in the South West from August 28-31st. The exact location will be announced 2-3 weeks before the camp on and

For more details about the gathering go to

EF Gathering

Making Echinacea Root Tincture

Today I made my first Echinacea Root Tincture – from plants I had sown from seed over three years ago. I can’t tell you what it meant to me. When I sowed those seeds I had no idea what would emerge. I didn’t know if I’d go back to prison, if Mum & Ian would want me at Brook End past my license, if I’d ever see these little seeds come to life at all.

But they have, and they have rooted in the medicine garden I built with all the love and intention I could muster. It was a very sacred day today!

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