February 11, 2022
Shop Good has been part of the Round-Up For change initiative since June of 2020, which allows our customers to directly support organizations and funds that cater to a variety of initiatives and causes. We rotate this organization throughout the year and this quarter and are ecstatic to introduce our newest organization, Herbal Mutual Aid Network!
The Herbal Mutual Aid Network is a grassroots mutual aid organization founded in 2020 with the partnership of multidisciplinary artist, writer, DJ, and organizer Yves B. Golden and herbalist/founder of GOODWITCH, Remy Maelen. In the past years, HMAN has circulated free herbal care boxes for black and indigenous communities and organizations to provide accessibility to herbal remedies throughout the country. We are honored to have HMAN as our new ‘Round up for Change’ organization and spoke with them on the mission and drive behind such an amazing network.
Read on for our interview with them…
*Images via HMAN
Shop Good: What is the mission of HMAN and what areas do you serve?
Herbal Mutual Aid Network: HMAN is a grassroots organization providing free Earth-based care + herbal education as reparations. In the past, that’s looked like sending hundreds of individual herbal care packages to Black people coast to coast and producing free herbalism classes for the communities we serve. Our work is dynamic— we’ll continue to shift and adapt to meet the needs of Brown, Black, Indigenous, and Disabled individuals as long as we can sustain this work.
SG: How did you both come together to form HMAN?
HMAN: This project pretty much began in our DMs as we were both reaching out to friends all over, trying to gather resources to meet the needs of those afflicted by both Covid and systematic Black/Trans extermination in America, in the wake of George Floyd’s murder in May of 2020. We tapped in to funnel resources from those who had excess to those with barely enough.
SG: How does wellness intersect with activism within mutual aid?
HMAN: “Wellness” as an industrial complex is in direct conflict with the wellbeing of our communities— wellness in a holistic sense. Everyone is entitled to good health and prosperity, but what we typically see is “wellness” as whitewashed luxury goods available to the few at the expense of so many others who are systemically deprived of care. Ads are everywhere, but access to resources that sustain and fortify communities of color, trans communities, indigenous communities, etc. fall under the umbrella of imagined scarcity. We all need to stay vigilant and activate ourselves for the good of the collective. No one can slip through the cracks in the pursuit of well-being. Wellness isn’t an individual pursuit. We only really heal as a collective.
SG: Do you both have any exciting things coming up for HMAN?
HMAN: We’re getting ready to launch a free line of herbal formulas created in collaboration with different Black herbalists, whose work we’ll be promoting over the coming year. These formulas exist always for free/never for sale and will be distributed in bulk to various Black and Native-led local mutual aid organizations across the country.
All our goals are predicated on the continued support of able-bodied, white, and wealthy people. The more support we get, the more resources we can funnel to the people who need it. The more visibility we garner, the more people will take up and support similar causes.
To take part in the Round Up for Change initiative, you can select at checkout to round up your order amount to the nearest dollar or enter any amount you’d like. We love that we can connect the Shop Good community with HMAN and all their amazing work!