The Magical Botanica Of East Harlem

The Secrets of A Latin American “PHARMACY” In El Barrio

Casa de las Velas

Rosa is behind the counter handling a stream of customers. She exits and enters with herbs or candles. Through a simple consultation of her loyal customers she can quickly advice them on the materials they would need.

“El Barrio represents something so beautiful to me. There is something pure and rich about knowing ones traditional culture. I am Latina, from Guatemala but I love being in a place where you meet other Latino’s and learn of their cultural traditions. I don’t want to know about the History of other people just out of pride but I want to know about it because it is a part of their identity. A person can have all the education, and all the success but you are really nothing if you lost your tradition. Here we try to maintain that tradition and our customer’s value and appreciate that. With time there is no telling what will happen to this or any Botanica in El Barrio, many have closed but for now we will continue being the providers for the generations longing to embrace their culture,” Rosa said.

— — — — — — — — — — —

Check out episode one: Sweet Harlem.
Check out episode two: Dark Fashion.

— — — — — — — — — — —

HarlemFocusDocs is a cooperative project of CCNY — Amsterdam NewsUrban Digital Media Lab in Collaboration with The Documentary Forumand The CCNY/BFA Documentary Workshops.

We’ll be releasing a documentary every Thursday.

— — — — — — — — — — —

#HarlemFocs #HarlemFocusDocs #Docs

Like what you read? Give Harlem Focus a round of applause.

From a quick cheer to a standing ovation, clap to show how much you enjoyed this story.