T H E  H  A  P  P  I  N  E S S  C  L U B  M A G A Z I N E

KUNASEMEKANA

Y O U    A R E    W  H A T    Y O U    C O N S U M E

Just something to think about.

Why make it so complicated! Is this a magazine or a club?

So… just so you know… everything about Be Well, the Happiness Club would fall firmly under the heading of “EXTRA”. From requiring a nomination to join the club to needing you to RSVP to attend one of our events or experiences. From personalized invitations to thoughtful take- home gifts. And instead of a regular looking newsletter; here we go creating a monthly curated magazine!

Why?

I’d like to say so many things that would make me look better or may make me sound more visionary, but the truth is Covid 19 happened. Not the way you think; I didn’t get sick and I didn’t suffer a great loss. Well, I did suffer loss, but it wasn’t the impetous to take the plunge. Instead what rang my bell was “time”. Time to reflect, time that wasnt supervised, time lost, time regained, all the different versions of “Time”. This year was a wake up call on so many levels, to so many people, but for me the biggest “Aha” was its time!

It’s time to take the plunge, It’s time to tell my/your story,

It’s time to stop feeling sorry for my/yourself,

It’s time to intentionally start caring for my/yourself,

It’s time to sip and savor every drop of life, wellness, joy and happiness in this life,

It’s time to stop waiting for permission,

It’s time to intentionally and authentically seek happiness.

It’s time to thoughtfully and with pupose engage with the world

How?

At Be Well, the Happiness Club we believe that everyone should live with integrity and purpose. We curate ideas, lifestyles, thought-leadership and experiences, inspired by the eight dimensions of wellness. We have created a space; A Happiness Club for our community to explore and engage with our collection.

Would you like to join us?

Christine Githiomi

FOUNDER,

BE WELL, THE HAPPINESS CLUB

CURATION

There is a difference between content creation to promote a brand and to market a business and content curation in furtherance of learning, conservation and interpretation of the mission of the exhibition space and the meaning behind the collection.

This digital periodical is designed to add meaning to your life, to offer different perspectives and at it’s most mercenary; to act as a guide book, an interpretation of Be Well’s programming and why we choose the ideas, the programs and experiences that we do. Basically; how it represents our stated values and why it matters to you; our readers and guests

Dear reader,

Kunasemekana; the world is waking up to mother Africa and all of its beautiful progeny, but more importantly Africa’s offspring are waking up to possibility, to ideas, to beauty, to well-being, to prosperity and to the power of influence.

Let’s talk about those who influence the influencers.

The tastemakers that are telling the continents story by authentically telling their own stories. The curators, the organizers and the activities. All of whom use all the mediums, platforms, voices and et al at their disposal to tell THE epic tale of history, heritage, oppression, suppression, lack of access, equality and resources, but always in the end …we rise!

Above

Okwui Enwezor, Art Curator

  1. Polly Irungu , Photo-journalist
  2. Vava Angwenyi, Writer.

WE BEGIN BY NOT MAKING ASSUMPTIONS; “KUNASEMEKANA” IS LOOSELY TRANSLATED FROM SWAHILI TO MEAN “IT IS BEING SAID”.

Vava Angwenyi:

The Coffaholic

I first met Vava on Linkedin.

A quick flashback to 2010 when my parents came to Washington DC and we had big dreams of opening up the coffee Industry to Kenya. Of course, it was going to happen. Had I not found out that Americans were serious about their coffee? Had I not just convinced my flint eyed African American Boss and her husband that they needed to forget about diamonds in the South of Africa and look into the black Gold in East Africa? Had I not convinced them to make the trip with my parents to Boston to attend the SCAA? We were going to change the world! My dad just wanted to get paid the money that Mbo I Kamiti owed him.

Needless to say: (but I am going to say it anyway) none of that happened, we were left heartbroken and confused. The SCAA and the Fairtrade folks didn’t want to speak to an eager Kenyan family excited to be at the cheap end of the sprawling coffee conference. They wanted to speak to the Coffee Board of Kenya, they wanted….

Honestly, I don’t know what they wanted and I still don’t know. Maybe for the continuation of the status quo. Nevermind, I don’t anymore.

I saw a couple of ads featuring the undeniable and unforgettable Vava Angwenyi! Take a look at her website, you will find here numerous accolades and achievements. She is a coffee Exporter and was on the Board of the Speciality Coffee Association several times! Yes, you heard right. I didn’t stutter, she did the impossible, made herself invisible, and somehow managed to breathe the rarefied air of the high-end specialty coffee industry, on purpose and with all the right paperwork (as my sister would say)! Vava didn’t just get in, she was and is successful at it, wonders didn’t cease with our girl! she wrote a book, raised a child, and run the first simultaneous #metoo and #blacklives matter campaign against the SCA ever! Oh, Wait ….

I am not trying to downplay my homegirl’s achievements. The opposite! What we do here at Be Well is introduce you to the movers and shakers, our makers, and groundbreakers. Folks you might not hear about because they choose to do the hard thing. Vava Angwenyi will not be silenced, will not be set aside, and will not go quietly into that goodnight. She stands for what she believes is right whether or not it is popular, or whether or not it is convenient and like every strong black woman I have ever met, she does it with style and color!

And for the rest of us: all that is left to do is to buy her book. Do it now!

The activist

Polly Irungu:

Intrepid Photojournalist

I think that Polly is a collection of contradictions.

Which has been my experience of artists so it felt like coming home when we finally managed to connect over the phone. Falling immediately into such familiarity with each other we started correcting our appearance on Zoom while we talked! (you always want to do it but you can’t so you switch to audio instead).

I read about her for the first time from the Afro Tech Editors and I was at first so ashamed that I didn’t know her I convinced myself that we had already met and I just forgot about it. Yes. I do that sometimes. Polly is charming, hardworking and like most artists has a certain world view that she can’t help but engage in. She sees something wrong and she goes about changing it and then worries about how she is going to pay for it later.

I call her the artist for two reasons:

  1. She is an exhibited photographer
  2. I would have called her an idealist, but folks have made the word synonymous with

I think artists have had to experience the world as is and because they feel this world that much more than the rest of us do they are forced to recreate it, re-design it, or re-imagine it.

Ms. Polly Irungu makes it to the Be Well Curators list because she has gone a step further than just occupy the space that she finds herself, No. She is trying to let her fellow black female photographers around the world know that they are not alone.

Dear Reader, I will not tell you the reason that Afro Tech (that arbiter of all things black excellence in tech)

wrote a piece on her. I want you to meet her for yourself. What I will do however, is ask you to recommend her platform to any aspiring female photographer in the diaspora or here at home that you know would appreciate a sisterhood and a support system that quite frankly wasn’t there until Polly made the intentional decision to step out of her comfort zone and do the hard thing.

Oh and for those of us who know what winter does to African skin and disposition; send Polly and her Cucu your prayers for an easy winter….IN OKLAHOMA!

The artist

Okwui Enwezor

1963-2019

THE ELDER

It would not be right not to recognize Okwui Enwezor who become an Art Curator after beginning with another career altogether. He found that our stories were not being told and he made it his life’s work to bring Art, our expression to the worlds stage.

S A V O R
F O O D     A N D     S U S T A I N A B I L I T Y

farm to table

Getting from Farm to Table in Africa — Why We Invested in GET IT

B Y    L A V A N Y A    A N A N D ,    V I C E    P R E S I D E N T    @    V E S T E D W O R L D    A N D    J E F F    S T I N E ,
M A N A G I N G D I R E C T O R @ V E S T E D W O R L D

For a moment, imagine travel restrictions are lifted. You’ve just returned to your safari lodge after an awe- inspiring trek observing a family of gorillas in their natural habitat at Rwanda’s Volcanoes National Park. You sit down for lunch and you’re welcomed with the freshest meal you’ve had in ages — tree tomato gazpacho and roasted beetroot tartar as appetizers and roasted duck with butternut squash puree as your main course.

You may be surprised at the quality of the food. You may be wondering where and how this remote lodge sourced such fresh ingredients. Of course, East Africa, and Africa more broadly, has long been known for its incredible wildlife and landscapes, but not necessarily

its culinary scene. As tourism continues to grow, establishments like restaurants, hotels, and conference venues also become more suitable for global travelers like you. This doesn’to happen overnight, however — a significant amount of time, money, and energy was required behind the scenes to serve the mouth- watering meal you just had.

With $194B in African GDP driven by travel and tourism, we believe there is a huge opportunity to accelerate the emerging formal food service market, which can in turn provide a spark for Africa’s economic transformation.

Sysco, the world’s largest food distributor, alone earns $60B in annual revenue³. They operate more than 320 distribution facilities serving more than 650,000 customers. However, its success is highly dependent on strong existing infrastructure, including  warehouses, cold trucks, commercial farming, and sophisticated manufacturing.

Across the majority of the African continent, this infrastructure is underdeveloped or simply doesn’t exist. Ever wonder why McDonald’s is only present in 4 of 54 African countries? In addition to impacting the tourism and hospitality industry, this poses a significant threat to the long-term food security of Africa’s 1.3B inhabitants.

Of course, East Africa, and Africa more broadly, has long been known for its incredible wildlife and landscapes, but not necessarily its culinary scene. As tourism continues to grow, establishments like restaurants, hotels, and conference venues also become more suitable for global travelers like you.

L A V A N Y A  A N A N D

T I G O N I   Y O G A   B R U N C H

Tyb

W E C L I M B T H E H E I G H T S O F T H I S E P I C M O U N T A I N , A N D G A I N E D A D E E P E R  S E N S E  O F  L I F E  O N E A R T H

I thought about what the inaugural Be Well Experience would be I think I experienced all eight of the Be Well Wellness pillars in the process:

Stress about planning an event during the pandemic, will folks trust someone they have never met? Will they feel comfortable making the trip? Kenyans don’t like to travel to far out of their comfort zones, especially during a crisis, will the providers show up, will we have enough food.

Kawamwaki farm is beautiful on its worst day, but throughout the pandemic, folks have (wisely I might add) reduced the amount of upkeep they performed especially for large tracks of land. The maintenance is costly and since no one is visiting it would be a terrible waste of funds. Not to mention the farm keepers would also need to be on lockdown in their homes just like the rest of the country.

But ultimately, I felt that folks would appreciate an opportunity to get out into the great outdoors even for just a few hours. A chance to exercise and enjoy a healthy nutritional culinary experience by a master of her craft.

The Brunch Event was to be a way to reconnect with self. Retreat to the mundane or the new normal that we are now calling it and maybe try something new, some of our guests ended up on a horse for the very first time. They looked excited and I’m sure they left feeling invigorated and recharged.

We also wanted this experience to be as inclusive as possible and for finances not to be a barrier. We were very aware that though some of us found new purpose during the pandemic. Some folks already experienced the economic downturn before COVID arrived on the scene and made things even worse

I was also excited to be back at work planning experiences, doing something familiar, and yet in a whole new way. The experience got my team working and everyone was so gracious in making the event the success that it was.

All in all, The Be Well, Tigoni ‘Yoga Brunch Experience was EPIC! I made friends that we are still engaged in, all of us working to help and hold each other up in our varying adventures, guests, and staff. And though Be Well is moving forward: i.e. we now have a new and amazing Events and Experience Manager on board: the extremely professional Ms. Ann Watetu Kinyua.

My goal is to maintain the spirit of the original tyb Dear Reader, I don’t need to tell you that we are headed into some uncertain waters, every aspect of our lives has been shaken, possibly to see what comes loose or what holds on tighter

12

Charcoal Lemonade

What does charcoal lemonade taste like?

Charcoal lemonade tastes like lemonade. That’s it! It doesn’t taste gritty or black or charcoal-y or smoky or burnt whatsoever.Activated charcoal is different from regular charcoal or char. The latter are carcinogens, whereas activated charcoal helps with everything from detoxification to digestion to even seriously curing my stomach flu. Really! My very own! I couldn’t believe it.

Activated charcoal is made from everything from bone char to coconuts or olive pits. It’s processed at a very high temperature to “activate” it, changing  its structure and giving it those amazing benefits that make people drink black lemonade.The best part (Maybe?) is that it really doesn’t taste at all, and the powder is so fine that it blends in easily to most liquids. Enter… charcoal lemonade!

Why This Charcoal Lemonade Is So Good

This recipe only takes 4 ingredients and 3 minutes to make.The activated charcoal gives this lemonade a super healthy and aids in everything from digestion to heart health, anti-aging to stomach viruses and hangovers (Really!).

This charcoal lemonade is sweetened with maple  syrup, making it naturally paleo and vegan.

There’s a simple keto option, thanks to liquid keto sweeteners like monkfruit or stevia.

The Benefits of Activated Charcoal

I’m positively in love with activated charcoal on its own. And here’s a fun story: I came down with the stomach flu a while back and read, whilst bemoaning my own imminent death, that activated charcoal  could actually absorb the stomach bug. It has been used for thousands of years to bind toxins, heavy metals, even poisons, and flush them from your body.So after a few rounds of vomiting, I took a couple capsules. And that was it! I stopped throwing up. Amazing, right? I was sort of amazed. Like completely and totally amazed.

Other benefits of activated charcoal are:

  • Absorbing toxins, drugs, heavy metals, and poisons, and flushing them from the body
  • Anti-aging Improved
  • digestion
  • Hangover help! Really! Better
  • heart health Improved kidney
  • function Reduces fish odor
  • syndrome
  • Can reduce cholesterol levels
  • Skin improvement, when used topically

WHAT’S HAPPENING?

CHEF’S EXPERIENCE

Have you ever thought about cooking authentic Kenyan food the right way? Have you ever wanted to know what authentic Kenyan cuisine looks like when presented with that fine dining flair?

Be Well and the quintessential Hemingway’s in Nairobi have collaborated to present a cooking class that not only offers you variety: there are menu options from the three Kenyan communities of this great republic to choose from

FOOD EXPERIENCE

Come with us to celebrate the Westlands Burrough of Nairobi in Food and Drink tour of the best restaurants in Westlands INCLUSIONS AND FEES: You must make a dining reservation by sending an email to hello@bewellco.org to attend this event.Please purchase a ticket for a specific time and make a reservation along with your booked ticket time using the button above.Space is limited. Please be conscientious of the time you are purchasing your booking for.

YOGA EXPERIENCE

We are partnering with the Founder of Karibu Kenya, Tamara Britten, who will be running our Yoga programming for the day. and we are also privileged to have Sarah Seleheen of Boho Eatery designing and serving our Brunch Menu for the day.Add to this abundance of riches is the Venue: Kawamwaki Stables and Farms.
Kawamwaki Farm House was the family home to the Vaulkhard Family for the past 40 years. Built, in 1920, it retains the charm of a 1920s colonial bungalow, but over the years has been expanded to be a large comfortable family home. The house overlooks acres of private land, complete with a lake and waterfall.

FOR MORE DETAILS ABOUT THE HAPPENINGS, PLEASE VISIT WWW.BEWELLCO.ORG/EVENTS

EVENTS AND EXPERIENCES

By Jacob Walker

Micro-events are everywhere. There are micro-weddings, micro-mitzvahs, and a new concept, Hub-and-Spoke, a hybrid virtual platform that includes small live gatherings and parties. Is this the way forward for the recently hard-hit event industry? Hestia Harlow thinks so. The new event decor and rental start-up aims to change the way the industry will look now, and into the future. It’s hyper-curated table settings, contactless party-in-a- box delivery concept, and wide array of products and services, provide a great resource for planners struggling with COVID-19.

“We wanted to bring all the excitement and design from a large-scale event to the table,” said co-founder Andrew Shortell. “Planners today need a way to coordinate smaller live events that will impress their clients. We believe this is the solution.”

As industries adapt to new demands, we are seeing a new trend of renting vs. buying. Companies such as Rent-the-Runway, Fernish, and Joymode are tapping into consumers’ desire to downsize and have more mobility. “Many young American urbanites have resigned themselves to a life of non-ownership.” wrote Sapna Maheshwari of The New York Times, “Renting isn’t just a matter of necessity these days, it’s become almost posh.”

Hestia Harlow offers hyper-curated settings of four or more, complete with table runners, chargers, plates, flatware, glassware, linens, candles, and so much more. Planners can select from the wide range of tablescapes, then add as many details as they wish, including custom routed place cards, designer florals, cocktail kits, and gifts their guests may keep. In addition to table decor, the company offers creative food and drink stations paired with specialty items such as caviar, boozy marshmallows, oysters, and even CBD water.

“Our vision is to build a community,” Shortell noted. “One that provides hyper-curated products and services for planners across the country.”

Hestia Harlow has created a service that takes the hassle out of planning (and hosting) multiple small events at the same time. Here’s how it works. Hestia Harlow creates custom landing pages allowing individual hosts to select their tablescape(s), food, and experiences for the night. Once confirmed, everything is delivered to the host’s doorstep with helpful instructions and videos; sometimes even including special digital demonstrations from a notable chef or mixologist to be streamed during the event. The best part, after guests leave, there’s no need to do the dishes. All items returned to the custom party box are picked up the next day.

This new trend is here to stay. These small intimate gatherings will deliver elegant, eclectic, and effortless entertaining that dazzle guests, long after safety guidelines disappear.This is truly event planning of the future.

For more information, visit www.hestiaharlow.com.

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