Sister Kate, Sisters of the Valley
“Working with the cannabis plant and other herbs, growing the plants, harvesting, and turning that into medicine – this is a calling. My advice to both women and men is this: ‘If you have been called to the plant, follow that calling’.”
Describe yourself and what you do.
We are an enclave of Beguine-revivalists. Our mission is to be self-sustaining through our work and to create jobs and career paths for women. We have occupied the habit that has long been abandoned by nuns in America (as well, they are going extinct), and we gave it new symbolism: Respect for the plant, respect for the people by announcing our presence when we are among them, and a meditative practice of staying in touch with our ancient mothers and their traditions.
What inspired you to start your company?
I began this business in 2014 and grew and harvested my first crop alone. I took two more Sisters in 2015, and our mission is to have activist/herbalist Sisters in every village and town across the planet. We are Beguine-revivalists intent on marrying a commitment to quality of products with a commitment to best business practices. We work to inspire women to create many jobs for women across the world. Honorable jobs.
What is your origin story for your canna business?
Necessity. Poverty. Experiencing first-hand the horrors of being a ‘throw away person’ and experiencing first-hand the disrespect for women by contemporary society. In 2009, I founded a cannabis collective to deliver medicinal cannabis to the sick and dying. At the time, the doctors of the central valley would only send me the terminally ill or physically devastated. Since their insurance didn’t cover the cannabis, I ended up giving away more than we sold, taking food and spending time comforting the dying, and it didn’t take very long before I felt like a real nun.
At the same time, I was becoming an activist (known as Sister Occupy), declaring myself a nun the same day congress declared pizza a vegetable. Eventually, the activism, my person spirituality, and the need for sustainable jobs came together to form this modern-day Sisterhood.
What is your Superpower?
I am an analyst. I connect dots.
Perpetual poverty in the central valley agricultural capital of America, fat, rich, old white guys making all the rules, structuring it so that the poor stay poor and the rich get richer. 57% of the people in our county are people of color, yet they are less than 1% of the law-maker and law-enforcement teams.
I connect dots. I make jobs. Those are my superpowers.
What has been your greatest obstacle in this industry or with your business to date – and how have you overcome it?
Ahhhhh! The greatest challenge comes from the bankster system and how they make us do ridiculous things to hide from the radar of the underwriters. All of us in the CBD business in America must do our commercial banking in private names, in order to take credit cards. Or we have to implement gift-card purchases, or something, because, God forbid that SISTERS OF THE VALLEY shows up on a credit card statement.
We have been booted off sales platforms, booted out of banks, booted off legitimate credit card processing systems, and in the end, we still do what we must to service the customers but we pay through the nose to do it and the banksters take advantage of all of us. I still struggle with this issue, along with all the others in the industry.
What is your vision for women in this industry?
The industry needs women, badly. The plant needs and craves female energies to enhance the plants’ healing energies. But working with the cannabis plant and other herbs, growing the plants, harvesting, and turning that into medicine – this is a calling. My advice to both women and men is this: ‘If you have been called to the plant, follow that calling’.
The men who have been called are the ones who treat their women, and their plants, with utmost respect.
The men that can be successful with this intelligent female plant, are those that also nurture, care for, and protect the women of their tribes. The plant craves female energies, but will accept the energies of men who live their lives respectful of women.