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Milady and Amelia

Dancing to the rhythms of batá drums in Casa del Caribe, Santiago de Cuba, Alaí met Milady. Milady coordinates the internationally renowned Fiesta del Caribe in Cuba every July. When she learned about the Caribbean Women Healers Project, she immediately offered an interview along with her aunt Amelia. Little did Alaí know that twenty-four hours later she would be catching a motorbike to one of the oldest cofradías of the enslaved and free people of color of Santiago de Cuba, where Amelia’s home is. Milady and Amelia, and three generations of their family, are regla de osha priestesses as well as having initiations in regla conga. As elders, they shared how the practice of regla de osha arrived to Santiago de Cuba from Havana, how they heal through the orisha tradition and regla conga, and the significant role of women in those healing practices.

Milady and Amelia are part of an intergenerational lineage of keepers of the regla de osha and palo monte tradition in Santiago de Cuba.


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