Episode 14: How Justice Defenders is Using Education to Defend the Defenceless

April 29, 2022
Episode 14: How Justice Defenders is Using Education to Defend the Defenceless #BreakTheBias #PrisonReform #UrbanPlanning #Podcast #justcity

In this episode, my co-host Hannah Ahamedi and I chatted with Milly Kakungulu, the Education Department Lead at Justice Defenders Uganda. Through our discussion, we learned more about how the Justice Defenders (formerly known as the African Prisons Project) are defending the defenceless by educating prisoners on how to provide legal services for themselves and others. Thanks to Justice Defenders' various training opportunities and a people-centred approach to justice, prisoners and prison staff can become paralegals and lawyers whose newfound skills help improve access to fair trials and legal services, and ultimately close the ever-growing global justice gap. What started off as a discussion about the non-profit's work, ended up in a deeper discussion about justice, equity, humanity, and community and how important it is to keep those four principles if we hope to transform our legal systems for the better.

In this episode, you'll learn about:

  • the importance of a people-centred approach to justice,
  • the different challenges that prisoners face with getting access to justice in the current legal system,  
  • the Justice Defenders model (education, training, practice) and the various opportunities that Justice Defenders provides participants,
  • how prisoners have leveraged the education Justice Defenders' has provided them to transform their own lives and influence policies that improve justice within their communities at various government levels,
  • the Reach Alliance and how our research project inspired Hannah and I to create this episode
  • and much more!


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Guest: Milly Kakungulu, Education Department Lead

Co-Host: Hannah Ahamedi

My name is Hannah Ahamedi and I am a researcher at the Reach Alliance focusing specifically on information dissemination in South Sudan. My research interests include the Swahili Coast, oral histories, feminist grassroots peacebuilding, global innovation, and conflict resolution. I am looking forward to graduating from Victoria College at the University of Toronto this spring with a B.A (hons) in Peace, Conflict, and Justice Studies, Diaspora/Transnational Studies, and History.  In my spare time you can usually find me reading sci-fi/fantasy novels, going to the gym, and taking part in numerous volunteer activities that I find incredibly fulfilling. 

To learn more about her click here.

Timestamps

  • 01:26 | An introduction to my co-host Hannah, the Reach Alliance, and why we chose this topic
  • 14:25 | An introduction to our guest Milly and her work
  • 16:41 | An overview of Justice Defenders' services and impact
  • 25:00 | Can you walk us through the Justice Defenders model  (education, training, practice) and some of the opportunities that Justice Defenders provide to participants?
  • 32:40 | What have been some of the challenges that Justice Defenders face in doing your work?
  • 36:21 | What are the challenges that prisoners face in prisons and how has Justice Defenders' overcome them and provided an amenable learning environment?
  • 41:20 | Understanding that you have probably encountered some very inspirational people in your work with Justice Defenders, would you feel comfortable sharing a story of a moment where you felt the most impactful?
  • 46:47 | Do you think that Justice Defenders has an equal impact on women in prisons?
  • 48:35 | How does working in women's prisons differ from men's prisons?
  • 51:00 | What is people-centred justice?
  • 56:20 | Seeing that East Africa is still considerably impacted by the British colonial system, does Justice Defenders have future plans to emphasize traditional or pre-colonial indigenous justice systems?
  • 1:02:01 | How can people get involved with the organization?
  • 1:01:15 | We know that already expanded to the USA and set up a branch there. Do Justice Defenders see itself expanding across the continent?
  • 1:01:15 | How can people get involved with the organization?
  • 1:05:20 | Key takeaways from our conversation

Show Notes

Want to learn more? Check out this episode's references!

Justice Defenders. (n.d.). Justice Defenders. https://www.justice-defenders.org/

Task Force on Justice. (2019). Justice for All – Final Report. https://bf889554-6857-4cfe-8d55-8770007b8841.filesusr.com/ugd/90b3d6_7cc00af558bf46a88fb262e6a467f819.pdf

Acknowledgements

Sponsorships

This episode is co-sponsored by the University of Toronto School of Cities and the Department of Geography and Planning. 

The School of Cities "convenes urban-focused researchers, educators, students, practitioners and the general public to explore and address complex urban challenges, with the aim of making cities and urban regions more sustainable, prosperous, inclusive and just". To learn more about the School of Cities visit www.schoolofcities.utoronto.ca

To learn more about the Department of Geography and Planning and the different undergraduate and graduate programs available please visit www.geography.utoronto.ca.

Support
  • Editor and Research Assistant: Hannah Ahamedi
  • Music Producer: Imany Lambropoulos
  • Podcast Host and Graphic Designer: Alexandra Lambropoulos

Stay in the loop!

If you would like to be interviewed, have an interesting idea to share for an episode, or have any feedback on the podcast, please send me an email at hello[at]urbanlimitrophe.com.

If you enjoy the show, please share it with your family, friends, magician, makeup artist, meteorologist... and leave a review on Apple Podcasts! 

Make sure to subscribe to the newsletter and follow the podcast on Instagram to stay in the loop


Episode 14: How Justice Defenders is Using Education to Defend the Defenceless #BreakTheBias #PrisonReform #UrbanPlanning #Podcast #justcity
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Meet the Urban Limitrophe Team

April 23, 2022


If you've been listening to recent episodes of Urban Limitrophe then you've probably noticed a few recurring names in the credits of the podcast. If you're wondering who they are, wait no more! It's time to put some faces to the names you've been hearing and introduce the Urban Limitrophe team: Hannah and Imany!

Hannah Ahamedi, Editor (and Co-Host)*

My name is Hannah Ahamedi and I am a researcher at the Reach Alliance focusing specifically on information dissemination in South Sudan. My research interests include the Swahili Coast, oral histories, feminist grassroots peacebuilding, global innovation, and conflict resolution. I am looking forward to graduating from Victoria College at the University of Toronto this spring with a B.A (hons) in Peace, Conflict, and Justice Studies, Diaspora/Transnational Studies, and History.  In my spare time you can usually find me reading sci-fi/fantasy novels, going to the gym, and taking part in numerous volunteer activities that I find incredibly fulfilling. 

What is an African city that you would most like to visit? 
A difficult question since I have a very very long list BUT Luxor in Egypt definitely takes the number one spot. 

What’s your favourite song sung by an African artist? 
Malaika by Miriam Makeba. My father used to sing it to me when I was a child and it brings back good memories. 

What’s a book that you think people should know about? 
Mans Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl! I have probably read it about 5 times. It always provides clarity to me in the moments I need it most. 

The future of Africa is ___?
Limitless

Tell us a fun fact about you!
I am of Kenyan/Yemeni/Canadian descent! 

Get in Touch with Hannah on:

Imany Lambropoulos, Music Producer

My name is Imany Lambropoulos, and I am a high school student. I am interested in neuroscience, and I am interested in potentially becoming a neuropsychologist or a clinical psychologist. In the future, I would like to attend either Queen’s University or the University of Toronto to further my studies, and I intend on obtaining my Ph.D. degree. In my spare time, I enjoy reading all sorts of books. My favourite genres include fantasy, sci-fi, and the occasional mystery novels. I also enjoy spending time with my friends, finding new restaurants to visit, or watching movies and tv shows together. 

What is an African city that you would most like to visit?
There are a lot of African cities that I think would be interesting to visit but, if I had to pick one it would be Cairo. 

What’s your favourite song sung by an African artist?
My favourite song sung by an African artist is Tumbum by Yemi Alade

What’s a book that you think people should know about?
Beasts of Little Land by Juhea Kim 

The future of Africa is ___?
Its people.

Tell us a fun fact about you!
I can play the saxophone. 

* Hannah will be a co-host on an upcoming episode of the podcast where we speak with Milly Kakungulu from Justice Defenders. To learn more about Hannah and Justice Defenders' amazing work make sure to subscribe, follow on social media, and stay tuned for new episodes coming your way.

Episode 13: How Lima’s Sonic Landscapes Are Shaped by Afro-Peruvian Women

April 03, 2022

In this episode, I chat again with Roxana Escobar Ñañez. Roxana is pursuing her Ph.D. in Human Geography at the University of Toronto and she was recently one of five special guests on the 12th episode of the podcast. Given her unique research interests, after our last conversation, I decided to invite her to the show again to dive deeper into her work examining 'the places Afro-Peruvian women hold in Lima’s sonic landscapes' and Black womanhood in Latin America and to get a better understanding about how these themes of music, Blackness, and cities emerge in the diaspora. What started off as a discussion of her research turned into a vivid exploration of Lima's history through the lens of Afro-Peruvian music, food, culture, and most importantly Black joy and resilience. 

In this episode, you'll learn about:

  • the project of mestizaje and the origins of criollo music and culture in Peru,
  • what are sonic landscapes and how Afro-Peruvian women, in particular, are essential to shaping Lima's vibrant soundscape and unique cultural identity,
  • the key characteristics of Afro-Peruvian music, 
  • additional resources and artists to help you learn more about Afro-Peruvian culture and its impact in Peru,
  • the importance of highlighting Black joy when researching Black histories and geographies,
  • and much more!


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This episode is sponsored by the University of Toronto School of Cities. The School of Cities "convenes urban-focused researchers, educators, students, practitioners and the general public to explore and address complex urban challenges, with the aim of making cities and urban regions more sustainable, prosperous, inclusive and just". To learn more about their work visit www.schoolofcities.utoronto.ca.

Episode 12: An Exploration of Black Excellence in Future Geographers and Planners at the University of Toronto (Feat. GGAPSS)

February 27, 2022

This special episode of Urban Limitrophe is brought to you in collaboration with the Graduate Geography & Planning Student Society (GGAPSS) in celebration of Black History/Black Futures Month! In this episode, I speak with Roxana Escobar Ñañez (PhD Human Geography), Brianna Lane (MSc Physical Geography), Priscilla Ankomah-Hackman (MSc Planning), Jane O'Brien Davis (MSc Planning), and Bola Oshinusi (PhD Planning) to explore why they got interested in geography and planning, and their advice for other aspiring geographers and planners looking to study in this field.

In this episode, you'll learn about each guests':

  • research interests and upcoming projects,
  • reasons for studying at the University of Toronto,
  • hopes for having more diversity in their respective field,
  • advice for other emerging geographers and planners,
  • and much more!


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Episode 11: How the Black Planning Project is Diversifying Urban Planning One Story at a Time

February 20, 2022

Episode 11:  How the Black Planning Project is Diversifying Urban Planning One Story at a Time | Urban Limitrophe Podcast | #urbanplanning #blackplanningproject #diversity

In this episode, I speak with Abigail Moriah, a registered urban planner and founder of the Black Planning Project. Through this initiative, Abigail and her team, collect and share the stories of Black urban planning professionals and students to highlight their important work and encourage more diverse voices to enter the profession. Most importantly, through its various mentorship opportunities and research endeavours, the Black Planning Project builds the relationships and the community ties necessary to make sure that urban planning and hopefully the city building sector overall makes room for new perspectives and ideas.

In this episode, you'll learn:

  • why it is essential to encourage spaces where urban planners can discuss racial injustices in planning,
  • about some of the experiences and injustices that Black planners face in their profession,
  • about resources and advice for emerging urban planners of colour to help them navigate the field,
  • the importance of including diverse voices in the urban planning profession,
  • and much more!


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Episode 10: How BuildX Studio is Creating Dignified Circular Affordable Housing Across Kenya

February 13, 2022

Episode 10: How BuildX Studio is Creating Dignified Circular Affordable Across Kenya | Urban Limitrophe Podcast | #DignifiedHousing #DignifiedAffordableHousing #CircularHousing #Nairobi #Podcast

In this episode, I speak with Carolina Larrazábal, the co-founder and design director at BuildX Studio. BuildX Studio is an innovative award-winning architectural studio based in Nairobi, which is the first architecture, engineering or construction company in Africa to become B Corp™ certified. The team at BuildX Studio is on a mission to build radically better buildings. In our conversation, Carolina explains how her team is building dignified circular affordable housing in Kenya and how through their partnerships (i.e. with their sister branch BuildHer) and design process, their work embeds equity, diversity and sustainability in every stage of the development process.

In this episode, you'll learn about:

  • what is dignified affordable housing and what considerations go into creating it,
  • Mass timber/Cross Laminated Timber (CLT) and why BuildX thinks that it is the future of building materials in this region and beyond,
  • BuildX's Circular Cooperative Affordable Housing Project,
  • BuildX's efforts to build 10,000 affordable homes by 2030,
  • how BuildX hopes that their affordable homes will provide a pathway to homeownership for low-income sectors of the population,
  • and much more!


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Episode 9: How the Dikan Center is Building the First Photo Library in Ghana

January 17, 2022
Episode 9: How the Dikan Center is Building the First Photo Library in Ghana #Podcast #AfricanCities #UrbanLimitrophe #TheDikanCenter #VisualStorytelling

In this episode, I speak with Paul Ninson, a photographer, and filmmaker about the importance of visual storytelling and how after collecting over 30,000 books on photography and film, he is in the beginning stages of building The Dikan Center. The center will be the first visual storytelling library in Ghana. The Dikan Center will train not only the next generation of storytellers but build a community hub that welcomes locals and newcomers alike to learn about, celebrate, and create African stories and flip the dominant, negative narrative about life on the continent.  

In this episode, you'll learn about:

  • Paul's vision for the center and the programming it will provide,
  • the upcoming photography exhibition,
  • how he collected over 30,000 books to start the Dikan Center,
  • how the center will be an incubator for talent as well as community,
  • opportunities to get involved with getting the center built and learning/teaching about visual storytelling,
  • and much more!


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A Look Back on Year 1 of Urban Limitrophe!

January 16, 2022

 

Today marks 1 year since the podcast launched! Since the first episode, there have been 8 episodes of Urban Limitrophe spanning 7 countries (2 in the diaspora and 5 on the African continent) each celebrating the interesting projects that the guests had to share. Read on for some updates about what some of the past guests have been working on, a sneak peek for guests to come in 2022, and some other bonus content!

Episode Updates

Surf Ghana

In December 2021, I spoke with Sandy, the founder of Surf Ghana, about the organization's fundraiser to build Accra's first skatepark. Since the episode has aired they have successfully built the park and have even begun hosting events and activities like DJ workshops! 

To stay up to date about the park, you can follow the Freedom Skatepark's journey on Instagram @freedomskateparkgh.

To learn more about the project and listen to the episode click here.

McNulty Consulting 

In the second episode of the podcast, I spoke with Grant McNulty of McNulty Consulting about iAfrika, a new mobile-friendly platform that provides libraries and their patrons a unique service that allows them to create library content in local languages. Since the episode aired in February, McNulty Consulting has launched a new initiative called Diji. Diji is a digital learning platform for African language speakers to learn African languages.

To learn more about Diji please click here

To learn more about the project and listen to the episode click here.

The Abibiman Project

Since we last chatted in March 2021, Rachel of The Abibiman Project has been hard at work growing her initiative by hosting pop-ups across Toronto to share her delicious African dishes, spices, teas, and treats. Her hard work has not gone unnoticed and Rachel has been recognized by Kostuch Media Ltd.'s (KML) Foodservice and Hospitality Magazine for being a Top 30 Under 30 in her industry!

To read the announcement and learn more click here and here!

To learn more about the project and listen to the episode click here.

The Hope Raisers Initiative

In the fourth episode of the podcast, I met with Daniel Onyango of the Hope Raisers Initiative, about how their Future Yetu (Our Future) program is breaking down barriers between the public and public policymakers, and how the organization is using digital storytelling as a tool for addressing climate change. Since the episode aired, they've released the Korogocho Climate Adaptation Manifesto that they had been developing when we last spoke. 

To read the manifesto and learn more about the project click here.

To learn more and listen to the episode click here.

Gbobètô 

In June 2021, I chatted with Naomi, the founder of the with Gbobètô, about their Projet Énergie verte (Green Energy Project) and how they're turning local waste into biomass briquettes that act as a source of sustainable and affordable energy in areas with poor electricity access in Bénin. Since the episode aired they have launched a crowdfunding campaign to raise 15,000 Euros to expand the project and begin mass-producing their biomass briquettes.

To donate and learn more about their fundraiser please click here!

To learn more about the project and listen to the episode click here.

Upcoming Podcast Guests

Year 2 of Urban Limitrophe is set to be filled with even more exciting projects! Stay tuned for interviews with guests from:
  • The Dikan Center (Accra, Ghana)
  • Ushahidi (Nairobi, Kenya)
  • BuildXStudio (Nairobi, Kenya)
  • BuildHer (Nairobi, Kenya)
  • The Black Planning Project (Toronto, Canada)
  • Mapping Black Futures Now (Toronto, Canada)
  • Le Centre d'Art Waza (Lubumbashi, Democratic Republic of Congo)
  • and more!

Guest Music Recommendations

After each interview, I ask the podcast guests for a song from an African artist that they enjoy. To hear some of the tunes that past guests have shared, check out the playlist below! To learn who picked what songs, you can visit each guest's profile on the podcast's Instagram profile: @urbanlimitrophe


Thank You!

I wanted to give a big thank you to the show's guests, listeners, and supporters (you know who you are!) for helping Urban Limitrophe's first-year start off with a bang! And of course, thank you to the sponsors who have supported the various episodes released this year: 

The Hope Raisers Initiative Releases the Korogocho Climate Adaptation Manifesto

January 09, 2022


In the fourth episode of the podcast, I met with Daniel Onyango of the Hope Raisers Initiative. Daniel and I discussed how their Future Yetu (Our Future) program is breaking down barriers between the public and policymakers, and how the organization is using digital storytelling as a tool for addressing climate change. 

In our interview, Daniel shared the multi step process of collecting local stories and experiences with climate change (including the unconventional, creative means they used to gather community input). He also explained how the insights from the stories and consultations would go on to build not only a Carbon Sink Pocket Park in the neighbourhood but the Korogocho Community Climate Adaptation Manifesto. During our discussion, Daniel revealed how the guidelines and recommendations outlined in the manifesto would go on to inform the City of Nairobi's Climate Adaptation Plan. 

When we spoke they were still hard at work developing the manifesto, but in late May 2021 they finally released it! So, to read the manifesto and learn more about the project please visit: hoperaisersinitiative.com/future-yetu

To learn more about the organization and their work, make sure to tune into Episode 4: How Hope Raisers Uses Digital Storytelling To Build Community Climate Resilience In Nairobi, Kenya


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