10 Dec The Launch
Sunday the 1st December 2019 saw the long awaited arrival of the PlantEd Collective launch evening, where the girls were set to be joined by honorary team members for the evening, Ricki Lake and Abby Epstein of Weed the People.
Held in a beautiful venue in London, the Everyman Theatre in Kings Cross bar was buzzing with the canna-curious waiting to be seated. The audience was a diverse mix of doctors, activists, holistic practitioners, patients, press, herbalists and researchers. Making use of the time to hold space together, make connections and generate dialogue about the topics at hand. There was a real sense of hope and positivity in the air and of course lots of laughter as the Planted girls clearly have a very close relationship and down to earth connection.
The audience were ushered into a screening room, made up of comfortable couches with cushions and blankets, as well as a gift bag on each seat filled with cannabis and hemp related goodies for each attendee. The format of the evening saw the seven women on directors chairs on stage, in front of a large screen, facing a captive and comfortable audience. The girls had selected clips from the documentary Weed the People, which all were focused around the story of one child in particular, Chico Ryder, and his journey utilising cannabinoids in his recovery from cancer. After introductions were made, and a reluctant disclaimer around the heavily debated 1939 Cancer Act announced the evening truly began. Strategic clips of the documentary were shown, allowing for a free flow of conversation around cancer treatment, opioids for managing pain, informed choices around cannabis products, cannabis stigmas, how to overcome them and the importance of women in cannabis and how many in the space have moved from patient to advocate.
Discussions spanned across these topics, with the Collective giving honest and frank contributions around their own personal journey with the plant. Abby Epstein and Ricki Lake also discussed comparable situations in the states and how certain cannabis models can be implemented in the UK. The girls talked in great detail about the importance of education in this space, in particular the PlantEd plans to develop a series of courses for consumers, to be released in 2020. Victoria spoke about wellness and yoga using CBD products and the importance of breath and exploring high levels of consciousness and addressing the stigmas that go along with those topics. Liz unveiled the PlantEd plans to publish a series of children’s books around cannabis and the plant, and Liz delighted the room by reading aloud the book that will be published first.
Following the screening, the audience were asked to participate in a PlantEd tradition, a salute to a friend, Natalie Mason, who is no longer with us. Natalie passed in August 2018 from cancer and the PlantEd girls salute her at the end of every public event to keep her in the forefront of people’s minds.
Retiring back to the informal setting of the bar, there was a pow wow circle to finish, where attendees could ask the panel questions in a relaxed setting. This session was very kindly chaired by the brilliant Mary Biles, a medical cannabis journalist working in the industry and the girls were thrilled she could join them. It was a very open environment where the women asking questions felt safe and supported and the answers from the PlantEd Collective were honest and caring, also insisting that anyone in the room could approach them privately and seek advice, support or even the recommendation of a good product to assist them with any ailments they have been seeking to manage
The feedback from this event has been incredibly humbling for all involved, PlantEd will be releasing a detailed plan of their project work shortly and you can sign up to the mailing list to stay up to date here.