BARRINGTON, R.I. — Jax Smith was suffering from chronic pain while in the middle of her nursing program at Rhode Island College. She did her research to attempt to find a solution, yet no amount of physical therapy helped. But she kept hearing about Reiki therapy, a Japanese technique that uses palm healing, which is said to transfer energy from the practitioner’s palms to the patient to encourage physical and emotional healing.
It’s a form of alternative medicine, and Smith decided to give it a chance. She said she went a healer in East Greenwich and had one eye slightly open to watch what the woman was doing. When the woman placed a rose quartz on Smith’s heart-shaped chakra, and she said tears streamed down her face.
“It was like a release for me,” she said recently. “That’s when I realized, this is real. This is not just made up.”
She eventually gave a presentation at a local hospital during her clinical studies about the power of Reiki. She said, “Since then, it just became a way of life for me.”
Smith has since teamed up with Jessica Xavier, who studied psychology and later trained in neuro-linguistic programming, to start the Thrive Tribe Collaborative in East Providence, which is an energy healing center where the women are on a mission to serve as catalysts for well-being through holistic practices. Both of them are now Reiki Master teachers, educating others about the technique.
To build off the Collaborative, the duo partnered with Andres Hincapie, who has a culinary background, to open the Thrive Tribe Cafe in Barrington. Their grand opening will be Dec. 4.
They’ve worked to blend ancient knowledge with modern day practices to help locals heal by measuring their aura, practicing Reiki and using light, voltage, frequencies and harmonics, and pulsed electromagnetic fields at the Collaborative.
At the Cafe, they said they look to create another form of a healing center while serving vegetarian and vegan crepes and toasts with gluten-free options, plant-based and locally sourced baked goods, and specialty teas. They plan to brew both Colombian and organic fair trade Sumatra Mandheling, which is a coffee bean grown on the slopes of Mount Leuser in Indonesia. The area where the beans grow is said to be one of the most bio-rich ecosystems.
Their beans will be sourced from Downeast Coffee Roasters in Pawtucket.
Inside their light-blue painted shop on Maple Avenue, the main staple is expected to be the Green Dragon ($10), which is Texas toast layered with smashed avocados, vegan mozzarella, tomato, microgreens, and a “Farmesean.”
The “hOMie” crepe ($9) will be smothered in a hazelnut spread, sliced bananas, strawberries, shavings of coconut, and drizzled in a chocolate sauce while the Boss ($9) crepe is draped in blueberries and granola, spread with cinnamon almond butter, and complete with maple syrup and powdered sugar.
For something savory, the Chief crepe ($9) acts like a caprese with non-dairy mozzarella, tomatoes, basil, and a balsamic glaze.
Customers can also purchase from a selection of crystals, such as rose or clear quartz, and smudging tools like white sage and palo santo sticks to cleanse their home.
“We want people to come in and feel like they are home, in their own space,” said Hincapie.
And to give back, Smith said they are committed to leaving as small of a carbon footprint as possible. They have partnered with Bootstrap Compost for all of their food waste, but also for their biodegradable cups, utensils, and plates.
“We’re grateful for this land for hosting us. We want to give back and help preserve what we have,” she said.
While it’s been challenging to open a new business in the middle of the pandemic, Smith said people are more apt to look to crystals, smudging tools, and other forms of holistic practices to partner with their traditional solutions.
“There’s such an expansion of consciousness right now. Now so many people are are trying new perspectives. People can go to their physical therapy and a psychologist, and then they can also come to us too,” Smith said. “People want to treat their mind, body, and spirit all in one. They know they can come to us for that energy.”
“We bring Reiki and healing into everything we do,” said Xavier. “We want people to come here and feel nourished and uplifted.”
The Thrive Tribe Cafe is open Thursdays through Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sundays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. The cafe is located at 60 Maple Ave. in Barrington, Rhode Island. thrivetribecafe.com