Where Culture and Therapy Meet
We bring a decolonized and liberated perspective to therapy. Blackness and all expressions thereof, are celebrated here at Kuji. The Black experience is incorporated into all of our services and all voices – LGBTQIA+, POC, and Indiginous, are uplifted and celebrated.
Mission & Vision
Social Work is political.
At Kujichagulia Wellness Center we take a stance of anti oppression. We create a culturally affirming environment and practice therapy from a decolonized point of view. Our clients come first and we work with them to delve into psycho-social-spiritual healing practices. Code switching and dimming your own light are not encouraged.
Meet Our Team
Tiffany Cooper, LICSW – Co-Founder
Tiffany is a mother, spouse, daughter, and friend who is dedicated to the healing of the Black community. Born and raised in Dorchester, Massachusetts, Tiffany has a thorough understanding of how unhealed trauma can negatively impact a person’s life.
Having been a victim of racial discrimination in the work place, and dealing with the daily experience of racism, Tiffany understands how truly overwhelming racial trauma can be. Tiffany has practiced in various settings, ranging from outpatient treatment, inpatient hospital units and forensic settings with both children and adults.
Tiffany received a Certificate in Drug and Alcohol Counseling in 2014 from Cambridge College and a Masters in Social Work with a Certificate in Urban Leadership in 2016 from Simmons College (now Simmons University). Tiffany currently attends Suffolk University where she is working towards a joint Juris Doctorate and Masters in Business Administration degree. When Tiffany has some leisure time she enjoys traveling, reading and catching a good nap.
Jerrica Raspberry Lawson, LICSW – Co-Founder
Jerrica has worked in the human services and social work fields for over ten years. Within that time frame, Jerrica has witnessed many instances of intense human suffering, and resolved that she would make it her life’s mission to help people cope.
Jerrica received a Bachelor’s in Psychology from Northeastern University, and during her course work in Criminal Justice and African American studies, she learned more about the specific mental health needs of BIPOC communities. With her passion for hope and healing fully ignited, Jerrica then pursued a Master’s in Social Work at Simmons College (now Simmons University), graduating in 2017. There Jerrica sharpened both her social justice and clinical skills, working in an array of settings.
Jerrica also increased her leadership skills during this time, serving as the Simmons Chapter President of the Association of Black Social Workers. Jerrica will begin the Doctor of Philosophy in Social Work program at Simmons University, where her focus of study will be centered around healing the trauma that affects Black bodies. During her down time, Jerrica enjoys baking desserts, socializing with friends, and knitting.
Krystal Elizabeth Garcia Deras, M.A., R-DMT
Krystal is a bilingual/bicultural queer first-generation daughter of immigrants native to Honduras and Nicaragua, and a student of opening her heart wider to herself, life, and all their relations in spirit and in flesh.
They are the first college graduate of their Garcia family, earning a Bachelor of Arts in Cultural Anthropology from Bryn Mawr College in 2013 and Master of Arts in Mental Health Counseling Specializing in Dance/Movement Therapy from Lesley University in 2020. While studying at Lesley University, she was the recipient of the 2019 Selase Williams Unity Gala Foundations Award, presented to a student who through various efforts has demonstrated the importance of relationship building and self-work as foundational to having an inclusive community, and has been able to foster relationships across groups of privilege, marginalized identities, and aspiring allies. She is committed to dismantling dynamics of oppression in the inner and outer landscapes, and devoted to labors of love that co-creates spaces for healing arts, personal and collective well-being, and the evolution of consciousness.
They are a student of expanding decolonizing embodied critical pedagogy and liberation and sovereignty practices within the fields of Dance/Movement Therapy and Expressive Arts Therapy. She is part of a research collective archiving the historical and present-day contributions of BIPOC dance/movement therapists in the U.S., China, and India. She finds fulfilment in ritual/ceremonial arts, quality time spent with loved ones, remembering ancestral technologies, dreaming, journaling, and multimodal storytelling.
Zarinah Gray, MSW
Zarinah is very passionate about helping alleviate symptoms of mental illness while promoting health and wellness especially for Black and Brown communities. It has been her dream to deliver outpatient therapy to clients who look like her. Zarinah modifies her therapeutic approach to each client’s specific needs. Her educational background includes a Bachelors in Social Work (BSW) from Regis College in Weston MA, and a Masters in Social Work (MSW) from Bridgewater State University in Massachusetts.
Zarinah understands how life stressors can weigh on how individuals function in life. She helps clients become their best selves with CBT, Solution Focused, mindfulness, and other therapeutic modalities. She can help lessen the stigma of receiving mental health services with psycho-education and cultural competence. Zarinah is energetic and enthusiastic. She believes in being herself and showing up as her most authentic self in every session. She is excited to get started with you on your journey to better health.
Daphne Cruz-Baez, MSW
Daphne (ella/she) is passionate about community and is committed to decolonization. She speaks both English and Spanish. She comes from Borinken (Puerto Rico) born and raised. Her decolonization work is deeply tied to her identity as a Boricua. Her awareness of the island’s continued colonization at the hands of the US informs how she relates to her work as a therapist, as her goal is to help support, uplift, and work alongside Black and Brown women in the mental health field.
She’s worked in the mental health field for almost a decade and recently obtained her Masters in Social Work from Boston College. While at BC she was a part of the Latinx Leadership Initiative, where she obtained the clinical skills to better serve her community. Daphne learned throughout her studies that no amount of education can replace lived experiences, especially when it pertains to serving communities that are marginalized. Daphne is eager to work with adult individuals and couples at this time.
Daphne has worked on specializing in treating eating disorders amongst the BIPOC population. She attended the very first conference for treating eating disorders in BIPOC peoples earlier this year. She doesn’t believe the BMI is an accurate predictor of health and believes subscribing to diets for eating disorders is backwards. During her down time, Daphne enjoys going on walks with her family and taking long naps.
Lisa Laguerre, M.S.
Lisa has a passion for issues around race, equity, justice, community wellness and mental health. With 25 years’ experience in the human service field, Lisa has devoted her time to supporting BIPOC youth and families through clinical counseling and raising awareness to important race and justice issues, around race and policing, in Boston’s urban communities.
Lisa received her Master of Science Degree in Criminal Justice in 1997 and Masters of Science in Clinical Counseling Psychology in 2017 from Northeastern University where she also works as the Director of Community Engagement for the Institute on Race and Justice. Lisa has worked in several community based social service, nonprofit and mental health agencies and provides individual, group, and family counseling.
Lisa offers a person centered, relational, approach to help her clients identify coping strategies to face life challenges. Her specialty areas are youth and families, community & intergenerational trauma, Christian counseling, and managing the impact of racial discrimination.
If you're having a mental health emergency, call one of the following:
B.E.S.T Team - Mobile Crisis Team
Metro Boston Area
Tel: (800) 981-4357
Tel: (800) 273-8255
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
Community Counseling Of Bristol County
Tel: (508) 580-0801