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Demystifying Haitian Vodou to Better Understand the Cultural Context of Health Outcomes of Haitian Americans

Event Date:

May 3 @ 6:30 pm


Vodou Holistic Center
4520 West Hallandale Beach Boulevard Suite 10
Pembroke Park, FL 33023


Charlene Desir
(786) 588-8855

Program Description:

Often times, those within a particular culture, such as Haitian culture, do not have a voice to explain the cultural and healing aspects of their tradition. In the Vodoun culture, there are principles and practices of healing that remain unknown to the majority of Western Culture despite centuries of Haitian contribution. Medical research shows that patients who integrate prayers heal at a faster rate and as a result clergy are integrated into the hospital setting. Vodou priests and priestesses are excluded from these settings, often due to the major stereotypes associated with Haitian Vodou. Common understandings of Vodou are often limited to Hollywood depictions of a voodoo doll when, in reality, Vodou prayers and rituals incorporate the use of natural elements within an environment that lead to physical healing. Enslaved Africans that were brought to Haiti included healers, scientists, and herbalists who passed down generations of healing practices for their community. This panel will highlight how Vodou understandings can be successfully integrated into medical practice. The participants will include Dr. Valencie Exceus, an acupuncturist; Dr. Jerry Giles, M.D., and Manbo Amelia Ingrid Llera, a priestess in the Vodou tradition.



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