The Indigenous Alliance Without Borders/Alianza Indigena Sin Fronteras (AISF) and the Plant Cruzer/Planta Movil project distributes plant medicine to Indigenous organizations and QTBIPOC-allied activists at no charge. The Indigenous-led project provides medicine for people in Indigenous networks based on Indigenous values of respect, reciprocity, responsibility, and redistribution, such as trade and barter or reciprocal exchange and donations. As such, this project also recognizes the sovereignty of the plant nations and their rights to peoplehood within the natural world. The PLANT CRUZER is a mobile tea/medicine station that can travel in a backpack, on a bike or in the back of a PT Cruiser or truck bed. The Plant Cruzer provides sustainable plant medicine from the desert.
The AISF has entered into preliminary partnership with other Indigenous cooperative agreements, such as with the Indigenous Institute of the Americas. Eventually we will expand the exchange of plants within a variety of Indigenous trade networks.
Gardens and projects allied with the AISF Plant Cruzer/Planta Móvil include: Oidag (garden in O’odham): The Giving Place at the Native American Research and Training Center at the University of Arizona, Las Milpitas Farm (Tucson, AZ), and the Indigenous Grocery Store of the Indigenous Institute of the Americas – www.iiamericas.org.
Those interested in adopting a formula may contact the plant keepers through this website. Tequios (Nahuatl for communal work for community good) are conducted periodically as a form of Indigenous capacity building in working with plant medicine, particularly the first medicines of the Turtle Island. Tequios are also done to gather resources to implement community projects. Traditional Indigenous herbalists coordinate, guide and conduct the medicine making.
By providing medicine within Indigenous communal networks and relations, the Plant Cruzer seeks to strengthen “healing as self-governance” within Indigenous communities.
Plant Cruzer Medicine Makers
DR. PATRISIA GONZALES (Dr. Patli or Dr. P)
Dr. Patrisia Gonzales descends from three generations of traditional healers who were midwives, herbalists, bonesetters, and traditional healers who did ceremonial medicine. She was raised by her Kickapoo, Comanche, Macehual and Mexican grandparents. She is a carrier of her family’s Mesoamerican lineage and has apprenticed with Nahua traditional healers in Mexico for three decades. Her great-grandfather Boni was a well-known curandero, bone-setter and ceremonial doctor. Her great-grandmother, Mama Concha, was a midwife in the 1800s and her grandparents also provided traditional care to family, friends and neighbors. She is a traditional birth attendant and herbalist and in a traditional practice has worked with cancer patients, trauma survivors and Indigenous peoples in an Indigenous clinic setting. She has created dozens of formulas for inflammation, coldness, to improve the pulse of life, deep immunity, nerve and muscle pain, nervousness, embedded imbalances, and vulnerable life force and medicine teas for use in prayer. She has written extensively on traditional Indigenous understandings of trauma and ways to address it. She is a mother maker and baby catcher, using the medicines on her altar, her bundle and her hands to bring life into this world.
The lineage that she carries from her great-grandparents provides that the plant medicine should be accessible and affordable to the people. Ceremonial medicine does not carry a pricetag. She follows a lineage, like many Indigenous teachings, that we should not charge for what the earth has given to us freely and, when we do charge, that it be within a scale that makes it affordable and accessible to people. Therefore, the medicine making she offers through PATZIN is on a donation basis. She has made tinctures, linaments, oils, salves and syrups and medicinal teas and baths, for survivors of violence, the victims of torture and violence and began offering plant medicine at Indigenous gatherings, powwows, community events and at women’s centers since in the late 1990s. She has offered a traditional clinic since 2000.
She teaches beginning and advanced courses about Traditional Indigenous Medicine and wellness at the University of Arizona and is one of the few scholars with an expertise in Mesoamerican and American Indian traditional medicineways. She is the author of Red Medicine: Traditional Indigenous Rites of Birthing and Healing (2012) and Traditional Indian Medicine (2017).
TRACI FAITH GUH TONALIG HUGHES HAMILTON
Traci Faith Guw Thonalig Hughes Hamilton is an Arizona based Licensed Massage Therapist, Indigenous Lactation Counselor, Womb worker, Full spectrum birth worker, Nutritional Consultant, Herbalist, and Traditional foods gatherer, single mom of two. Traci is of Mississippi Choctaw, Hiaki, adopted Tohono O’odham and European decent. A ceremonial wombyn who knows her journey of healing and helping others is her way of life, her strength. Traci has been involved with the Chukson (Tucson) community in many healing aspects. Traci spent four years with Ha:san Preparatory and Leadership School teaching rainwater harvesting, traditional in ground gardening; planting with the moon and rain cycles, seed to plate style teaching and food prep. Her informal and formal training is ongoing with family healers, ceremony, as well as the CEU state license requirements. Traci’s specialty is lifelong womb health and vitality, abdominal therapy, breast/chest therapy and full spectrum birth work. Her passion for protecting families ties in very closely with the old healing ways of her teachers and elders. As a mother and knowledgeable community member she stays strong in outreach and knowledge sharing. Traci continues to work on a sliding scale basis to make sure this important healing work is accessible. Her commitment is to honor her culture, be a strong community member and support a community of healthy warriors who step forward to make that effort for wellness.