Saadia's Juicebox & Yoga Bar

Saadia Farajian

 Photography By: Sarah Der

Photography By: Sarah Der

Owner, Saadia’s Juicebox & Yoga Bar

402 1/2 N 2nd Street | Richmond

www.saadiasjuicebox.com

 

Ashley Williams

Owner, bareSOUL Yoga

402 1/2 N 2nd Street | Richmond

www.baresoulyoga.com


 

A Creative Health Collaboration in Jackson Ward: Juice Meets Yoga

Interviewed by Chelsea Higgs Wise

 

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Saadia’s Juicebox shares a space with bareSOUL Yoga, which is owned by Ashley Williams, a certified yoga therapist. Together Saadia and Ashley are creating a safe environment to practice a mindful, conscious lifestyle. We interviewed Saadia to learn more about her journey to wellness.

 

I have always considered myself a highly curious individual, especially when it comes to food. However, I really discovered my passion for overall wellness and food in my mid 20s. I was living on my own and was just beginning to cook and understand food. I started spending a lot of time reviewing trends, attending seminars, and educating myself on the wonderful world of food and healing. Saadia’s Juicebox has really given me the opportunity to be creative in food and wellness, sometimes to the extent that I didn’t even know was possible. I never knew how far I could push myself in this creative role.

 

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I grew up in a very Pashtun family, so I was always scared of the kitchen because it represented a chore, and I was afraid that if I did cook, I would forever be banished to the female gender roles that take place in a Pashtun family, or at least that’s how it worked in mine. So I avoided the kitchen as much as I could and stuck to washing dishes, rather than cooking. When I moved out on my own and started to cook out of necessity, I found something very comforting about the process after a long day at work. You could even say I started to enjoy it. I would spend endless hours learning about food, the process of cooking food, understanding the medicinal value of herbs and spices, and the rest was history…

 

I have always been inspired by women who break from the norm and go into unconventional or male-dominated fields to take care of people they love and speak out for people who are voiceless, either by choice or circumstance — women who have passion for what they do and their sisterhood. There are many Pashtun women who have inspired me through the years in art, activism, social justice, and music. As a Pashtun woman myself, I look up to a lot of international women throughout the ages who have risen up and inspired nations.

   

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I am most proud of the community we have created. We did not just open a juice bar; we created a space for the community to be together on this journey to wellness and to have access to transparency in what we eat.

 
 Transcribed by Chelsea Higgs Wise Ilustration by Emily Herr

Transcribed by Chelsea Higgs Wise
Ilustration by Emily Herr