header image

[Sign Up Now] to Receive Our FREE Daily SCVTV-SCVNews Digest by E-Mail

Inside
Weather
Santa Clarita CA
Clear
Clear
76°F
 
Calendar
Today in
S.C.V. History
October 1
2017 - One SCV resident, John Phippen, killed and at least 9 others wounded in Las Vegas mass shooting that leaves 59 dead, 851 wounded [story]
John Phippen


| Thursday, Aug 27, 2020
Brooke Johnston and Shaira Busnawi
West Ranch High School seniors and tennis team co-captains Brooke Johnston and Shaira Busnawi, left to right, look at the Hiraeth blog they created on a cell phone. Courtesy

 

In an effort to create a safe haven for teens that focuses on mental wellness, West Ranch High School seniors and tennis team co-captains Brooke Johnston and Shaira Busnawi decided to create a blog.

The idea came to them on a rainy day in February when the team’s tennis practice was canceled.

“Somehow Shaira and I opened up to each other about our longtime wishes to create a blog,” Johnston said. “We bounced ideas off each other. She wanted to write about philosophy and law and stuff like that, and I wanted to write about creative writing, but we found common ground in wanting to create a community online.”

With school in session and tennis their main priority, the idea took a backseat, only re-emerging through the quarantine, when both girls had more time on their hands and a revived inspiration.

“Something that I struggled with over quarantine was feeling alone and not having anyone to talk to, and I know a lot of other teens have also felt that way,” Busnawi said, adding that they then decided to create a blog that revolved around mental wellness. “Everyone’s navigating through their life, and we’re just trying to figure out who we are, so we just wanted it to be relatable and a home for teens.”

Once settled on an idea, the girls quickly got to work, with Busnawi creating the website in just a day and Johnston coming up with the ideas behind the quirky name, Hiraeth.

“I really like finding and exploring interesting words that mean a lot, all packed into one word,” Johnston said. “Hiraeth means a homesickness for a home that you can’t return to or that doesn’t exist, so we thought that was just so expandable, and that we could just take that word and make it into something amazing, like an amazing home and amazing community for people.”

Johnston’s ideas for the blog revolved around Hiraeth, hoping to create a welcoming, community-based platform that allowed them to explore every part of teenage life.

From there, the idea quickly blossomed, with both girls submitting journal entries that discusses both global and local issues, and starting a book club, where each book also touches on important issues.

“We don’t want it to just be a home for other people, it’s really like a diary for us,” Johnston added. “It’s really therapeutic for us and a home for us, too, and we want to share it with other people, trying to be as vulnerable as we can so that other people feel safe to do that. If one person feels at home because of it, it’s all worth it.”

Busnawi agreed, adding, “I feel like whenever I go on to the blog, I feel that I’m so at home because of the topics and the issues that we talk about affect us as teenagers. … Sometimes I won’t be able to sleep at night, so I’ll write a blog post because it literally helps me get my feelings out.”

That being said, the girls hope to create a community with their audience, making sure they, too, can participate in the conversations.

“I hope teens reach out to us and want to talk about their issues because a lot of the times it’s hard for teenagers to talk to adults, so we just want to be there for people, whether that’s in the form of talking to them or writing up blogs and posts for them to relate to,” Busnawi added.

Their first post about breakups did just that, garnering responses about how much other teens related to it.

“I was literally crying because that was my goal,” Busnawi said. “As long as someone resonated with it, that’s the end goal.”

The feeling is mutual for Johnston, who said she loves when people say that a post moved them or helped them to feel better about themselves.

“It came together so fast because it’s something that we both always wanted, and to see that come to life was really special,” Johnston added. “I really, really love it.”

The girls hope to continue to grow the blog and its community, with plans to feature others’ stories about how they’ve been staying busy and keeping mentally healthy during the quarantine.

“The more we do it, the better we’ll get at it, so we just want to not give up,” Johnston said.

Through the website, visitors can input their email or phone number so that they receive notifications of new posts or they can join the book club.

For more information on the Hiraeth blog, visit hiraethblog.com or email yourhiraeth@gmail.com.

Shaira Busnawi and Brooke Johnston

West Ranch High School seniors and tennis team co-captains Shaira Busnawi and Brooke Johnston, left to right. Courtesy

Brooke Johnston and Shaira Busnawi,

West Ranch High School seniors and tennis team co-captains Brooke Johnston and Shaira Busnawi, left to right. Courtesy

Hiraeth Blog

West Ranch High School seniors and tennis team co-captains Brooke Johnston and Shaira Busnawi created a blog for teens called Hiraeth. Courtesy

Brooke Johnston and Shaira Busnawi

West Ranch High School seniors and tennis team co-captains Brooke Johnston and Shaira Busnawi, left to right. Courtesy

Comment On This Story
COMMENT POLICY: We welcome comments from individuals and businesses. All comments are moderated. Comments are subject to rejection if they are vulgar, combative, or in poor taste.
REAL NAMES ONLY: All posters must use their real individual or business name. This applies equally to Twitter account holders who use a nickname.

0 Comments

You can be the first one to leave a comment.

Leave a Comment


LOCAL SCHOOL LINKS
Related Content
LATEST SCHOOL NEWS
Tuesday, Sep 29, 2020
SAN FRANCISCO (CN) — Fed up with the growing number of untraceable homemade firearms used in gun crimes and mass shootings, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra announced a federal lawsuit Tuesday to force the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives to crack down on so-called “ghost guns” that skirt laws requiring background checks and age verification.
Tuesday, Sep 29, 2020
The Board of Supervisors approved a motion by Supervisor Kathryn Barger and coauthored by Supervisor Janice Hahn that will enable elementary schools to begin applying for a waiver to reopen grades TK-2 in schools, prioritizing schools with a high number of low-income students.
Monday, Sep 28, 2020
William S. Hart Union High School District officials announced Sunday Santa Clarita Valley public junior highs and high schools will not reopen in October, pushing the potential timeline for partial reopening to Nov. 13.
Friday, Sep 25, 2020
Valencia High Principal Pete Getz sent an alert out to the school’s families on Wednesday evening, regarding a report of a possible on-campus threat.
Thursday, Sep 24, 2020
Saugus Union School District governing board members voted recently to start the paperwork to submit a waiver request to allow in-person classes once L.A. County Public Health officials approve.

Latest Additions to SCVNews.com
2017 - One SCV resident, John Phippen, killed and at least 9 others wounded in Las Vegas mass shooting that leaves 59 dead, 851 wounded [story]
John Phippen
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health on Wednesday confirmed 30 new deaths and 1,063 new cases of COVID-19, including a new fatality in the city of Santa Clarita and 42 new cases in the Santa Clarita Valley.
Wednesday COVID-19 Roundup: 6,198 Cases, 61 Deaths in SCV; More Reopenings OK’d
The newly completed Enchanted Princess was delivered to Princess Cruises Wednesday in an official handover ceremony presented via live streaming video from the Fincantieri Shipyard in Monfalcone, Italy.
Enchanted Princess Officially Joins Princess Cruises Fleet
The Los Angeles Times on Wednesday published what the Los Angeles County Department of Health Services called a "misleading" article about the county's specialty care system.
L.A. County DHS: L.A. Times Story About Specialty Care ‘Misleading’
The Santa Clarita Public Library buildings may be closed, but book browsing will be available via the new "Random Reads" program beginning October 1.
‘Random Reads’ Launched Oct. 1 by Santa Clarita Public Library
Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station deputies arrested a suspect after a husband and wife made a citizen arrest of another man the couple accused of spying on them while sexually gratifying himself, according to sheriff’s officials.
Husband Makes ‘Citizen Arrest’ on Man Suspected of Peeking at Wife
The city of Santa Clarita has released the second edition of its Parks Passport Adventure, where residents explore a new selection of city parks each month to find and unscramble a secret message for a prize.
Santa Clarita Parks Passport Adventure No. 2 Now Available
Like many other sectors, the film and entertainment industries including events businesses came to a halt amid the months-long stay-at-home order.
SCV Filming, Events Businesses Discuss COVID-19 Impacts
Medical examiners with the Los Angeles County Coroner’s Office identified Maria De La Luz Torres, 66, of Palmdale, as the woman killed in a multivehicle traffic collision involving a Homeland Security agent south of the Newhall Pass on Interstate 5 Tuesday.
Coroner ID’s Palmdale Woman Killed in Multivehicle I-5 Crash
The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously Tuesday to overhaul the county’s response to residents having health crises, directing officials to design a system that dispatches experts in health and de-escalation — not police — during emergencies.
L.A. County Looks for Alternatives to Police-Only Responses to Health Crises
California commercial drivers can continue delivering essential products and supplies during the COVID-19 pandemic without worrying about an expiring license following a new round of extensions Wednesday by the California Department of Motor Vehicles.
DMV Extends Expiring Commercial Driver’s Licenses Through December
Shopping malls and nail salons are the latest businesses in Los Angeles County approved for reopening under limited capacity over the coming days, after action late Tuesday by state health officials.
More L.A. County Businesses Approved for Reopening
Prosecutors with the District Attorney’s Office declined to file a criminal case after two teens were arrested on suspicion of felony vandalism in August, following a Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station investigation into street painting.
D.A. Declines Criminal Case for Teens Arrested on Suspicion of Vandalism
1955 - Actor James Dean, 24, drives through Castaic Junction en route to his final resting place [watch]
James Dean
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health confirmed Tuesday 39 new deaths and 905 new cases of confirmed COVID-19, with 6,156 total cases in the Santa Clarita Valley.
Tuesday COVID-19 Roundup: 269,284 Cases Countywide, 39 New Deaths; 6,156 SCV Cases
The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted Tuesday to allow breweries and wineries to resume outdoor operations in one week.
Breweries, Wineries Can Reopen Outdoors Countywide Next Week
The largest indoor mall operator in the region, with locations including the Westfield Valencia Town Center, has filed a lawsuit against Los Angeles County over COVID-19 health guidelines that have kept the shopping centers closed.
Westfield Sues L.A. County Over Indoor Mall Closures
The Board of Supervisors approved a motion by Supervisor Kathryn Barger, whose 5th District includes the Santa Clarita Valley, and coauthored by Supervisor Sheila Kuehl to begin sharing data about veteran suicides between the Department of Veterans Affairs and Los Angeles County and explore the possibility of establishing a countywide veteran suicide review team.
L.A. County to Explore Veteran Suicide Review Team
Each October Circle of Hope recognizes Breast Cancer Awareness Month with its annual event, 31 Days of Hope to help increase attention and support for the awareness, early detection and treatment of this disease.
31 Days of Hope to Help Increase Breast Cancer Awareness, Support
SAN FRANCISCO (CN) — Fed up with the growing number of untraceable homemade firearms used in gun crimes and mass shootings, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra announced a federal lawsuit Tuesday to force the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives to crack down on so-called “ghost guns” that skirt laws requiring background checks and age verification.
California Sues Feds to Force Crack Down on ‘Ghost Guns’
Thousands of Southern California Edison customers were suddenly left without power late Tuesday morning in Newhall after balloons came in contact with power lines, according to officials.
Newhall Power Outage Due to Mylar Balloons
The Board of Supervisors approved a motion by Supervisor Kathryn Barger and coauthored by Supervisor Janice Hahn that will enable elementary schools to begin applying for a waiver to reopen grades TK-2 in schools, prioritizing schools with a high number of low-income students.
Barger Motion to Begin School Waiver Reopening Process Approved by Supes
While in-person events may be postponed for the time being, the city of Santa Clarita events team is bringing you virtual and physically distanced happenings to fill the void.
Santa Clarita Arts Calendar Features New Online October Events
The fast-moving Martindale Fire, which started near Bouquet Reservoir, remained at 230 acres overnight, with firefighters able to achieve 40% containment by Tuesday morning.
Martindale Fire Remains at 230 Acres, 40% Containment
%d bloggers like this: