This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (WGHP) — 18 Springs Community Healing Center is a space dedicated to change.

The facility in Winston-Salem uses therapy, classes, and group discussions to work toward a more culturally aware community. It is a collaboration between people who work in the healing arts as well as social justice activists.

Director Sydney Hughes-Mcgee says that starts with healing the individual. “We see individual wellbeing and collective wellbeing as two sides of the same coin. Self-love releases energy for social change,” Hughes-McGee said.

Grants from the Winston-Salem Foundation have made wellness services more affordable and accessible.

Reiki practitioner and energy worker Ouida Patten says self-love translates into societal shifts.

She helps participants learn how to care for themselves.

“In order to heal so many of the things that are going on in the world we really have to take a deeper look at how things impact people. There’s so much ancestral healing that needs to be done in order for us to move forward and to see the humanity in one another,” Patten said.

An important part of the center’s mission is to make sure everyone feels welcome. Program Coordinator Marla Gene says talking about past trauma and injustices is a way to move forward. “We are making real connections and we’re talking about the hard stuff. I feel like I can be a real person here who has real problems,” Gene said.

18 Springs Community Healing Center had to shut down for a while during the COVID-19 pandemic but is back open thanks to community support.

You can find more information at