The Healing WELL: A community for healing, renewal and growth
August 2019 Newsletter

Dear Friends,

We rushed through the rapids while clutching the sides of the rafts. We slept under the stars, feeling the gentle breeze amidst whispered conversations. We imbibed in mugs of hot coffee and tasted blackberries picked fresh off the bushes. What a gift our community partner, Healing Waters, offered 15 of our community members last month.  

We weren’t sure if Albert* would be able to take on the Class III rapids of the American River. After a stroke, he copes with significant mobility and speech challenges. He counters these with a deep desire to experience the fullness of life, and a willingness to take risks. The joy which emanated from his face, even after the guide on his boat fell overboard, sustains and inspires us still today. Albert, and everyone else on that trip, demonstrated the power of stepping out of our comfort zones - with hope and faith and community. We experienced not only a great sense of accomplishment, but also life’s beauty. That’s healing! Thank you for the support you've given us in these past four years to help make this possible.

Kathy Curran, Director

(*Name changed for confidentiality purposes.)

Enjoying Beauty
Botanical Gardens
On holidays, when many organizations are closed, The Healing WELL offers off-site programs so our participants have wellness opportunities and community connections. Here’s to touring and picnicking at San Francisco’s Botanical Gardens! 
Lake Merritt
Clarke pursued his childhood dream of climbing a tree near Lake Merritt on our Fourth of July field trip. He joined a dozen participants to soak in the East Bay sunshine with food and laughter, and a great experience of being together.
Building Community
Barbecued Ribs
Hats off to Chef Andre for the talk of the Tenderloin this week: his barbecued ribs! Last Wednesday we shared a “Summer Fest” community dinner; not a seat was left empty. Envisioned and prepared by The Healing WELL Friends, these quarterly gatherings create space for our participants and neighbors to gather around tables, share bountiful home-made food, and enjoy one another’s company. We are so grateful.
Thank you Emily!
With delicious food donated by Rocco’s Cafe, Schubert’s Bakery and Trader Joe’s, dozens of community members and canine friends wished “bon voyage” to our Mercy Volunteer (MVC), Emily Janda. Love and gratitude filled the room. Today we welcome our new MVC, Emily Staley. (And thanks to all of you who contributed to our fundraising appeal for our Mercy Volunteers. We exceeded our goal by $4500!)
Promoting Wellness
Staff Retreat
Our staff (June, Kathy, Emily, Sal, Ebony) enjoyed a wellness afternoon together, climbing to the heights of the Twin Peaks, meandering through quiet neighborhoods, and capping the day with ice cream. A great break and expression of our staff's commitment to wellness!
Thanks to Anthony (wearing a dark t-shirt on the left) and the team from PAE, a mechanical engineering company in the Tenderloin neighborhood, for donating the design and installation of a ventilation system for The Healing WELL. While we and our plants love our south-facing street front, the heat on sunny days can be challenging. We’ll be forever grateful for this innovative solution to create air flow.
Participant Expression: Art and Poetry

Living Today

Sounds like noise, not music
Or good times.
Sounds like Painful reminders.
Sounds like Pain.
My eyes are still shut
But I hear the reminders.
I want my life to be about the
Good times and fun.
Enjoying what is wonderful.
I’ll decide to make my day this
Instead of a day filled with dread.
My life is now and is there before me.
I open my eyes.
I choose to enjoy my life, and the people in it, and
I’ll let the people and my life Enjoy me too.
It sounds simple, but It’s not easy to do.

-Tuesday morning Poetry Participant
With brown paper bag strips and natural dyes, Angel led sessions on basket-making for our community. Pictured here is Joelle, who proudly displays the base of her basket, the most difficult part to create.
Donations by check, addressed to "The Healing WELL," are also welcome. 
Please mail them to:
The Healing WELL
476 Eddy Street
San Francisco, CA 94109
The Healing WELL is a fiscally-sponsored project of Community Initiatives
415.500.2099 | |