Hello, My Name is Harui…
When I initially started working as a social worker in South Los Angeles, I was working with youth who did not want anything to do with mental health. Many of the youth refused to talk to me and would call out, “how do you think you know how to help me.” While racking my brain, I turned to creativity. Being an introvert myself, talking was not a strength of mine; however, I was able to express myself in other ways such as cooking, baking, and crafting. I thought why not help tap into others’ creativity as a form of expression. When I created the space for individuals to feel safe, vulnerable, and express themselves however they wanted, something magical happened. Youth started to share their life stories through paintings, spoken word, photography and many more. Many were able to start their path of healing. Creative expression became a core and continues to be an indispensable part of who I am as a social worker.
Working as a social worker has not been a simple journey. While stressed, I would turn to baking as a form of my creative expression. Baking allowed me to let go of my should haves could haves and allowed me to feel truly myself. Through this journey, I discovered that I could combine my two passions of social work and cooking together in creating a therapeutic kitchen. Thus, Communitea Kitchen was born.
Communitea Kitchen is dedicated to help build a community of inspiration, hope and healing through holding space for each individual to explore their dreams. With each purchase made, a portion of the proceeds will be donated to different organizations to educate and advocate for various communities. We are currently working on finding a space to make this therapeutic kitchen accessible to all communities.
Thank you to those who have supported my dream and helped make Communitea Kitchen a reality. I welcome all of you to join me in this journey of stepping into our creativity.