Life In The Balance Life in the Balance is a monthly program that asks: What are the systemic issues in Baltimore that keep marginalized people from reaching their full potential – and what are the solutions to those problems? Each episode is rooted in an individual’s story about overcoming a personal hurdle related to one of these systemic issues. It might be homelessness, drug abuse, or a post-incarceration employment struggle. This narrative engages the listener throughout the program as concerned stakeholders – local non-profits, academics, authors, and politicians – also hear the testimonial and offer their best solutions. Life in the Balance offers listeners a thorough, nuanced analysis of the most prevalent issues in our city and beyond through the power of thoughtful analysis and engaging storytelling.
Life In The Balance

Life In The Balance

From WYPR - 88.1 FM Baltimore

Life in the Balance is a monthly program that asks: What are the systemic issues in Baltimore that keep marginalized people from reaching their full potential – and what are the solutions to those problems? Each episode is rooted in an individual’s story about overcoming a personal hurdle related to one of these systemic issues. It might be homelessness, drug abuse, or a post-incarceration employment struggle. This narrative engages the listener throughout the program as concerned stakeholders – local non-profits, academics, authors, and politicians – also hear the testimonial and offer their best solutions. Life in the Balance offers listeners a thorough, nuanced analysis of the most prevalent issues in our city and beyond through the power of thoughtful analysis and engaging storytelling.

Most Recent Episodes

Finding Healing through the Arts

Today we're focusing in on people who are confronting some of Baltimore's most ingrained issues head on through the power of Art. Baltimore is known for its thriving artistic scene and many artists are serving a dual purpose – as both artists and healers - through aesthetic expression they are quite literally restoring people and communities. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Getting By in Baltimore

On this episode of Life in the Balance, guest host, Jamyla Krempel, explores getting by in Baltimore in 2019. Why are so many working families struggling to pay their bills? We'll meet a housekeeping manager and local activist, Doreen Hicks. She's worked up to four jobs just cover basic necesssities. Are we solving the root causes of poverty or just responding to it's symptoms? We'll discuss the 2018 ALICE report (ALICE stands for ----Asset limited, Income Constrained, Employed----) with the President of the United Way and learn more about GEDCO, a local non-profit trying to fill in the gaps for families in need. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Gun Violence as a Public Health Crisis

What are we doing to address this ongoing crisis? Some say it's time to start looking at gun violence as a public health issue. That's the angle we're taking on this show. And we're talking with the folks who are at the front lines – working in Shock Trauma – in Annapolis – and at John Hopkins' renowned School of public health. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Changing Lives through Mentorship

Today on ----Life in the Balance,---- we meet a mentor-mentee pair, talk about Baltimore City's YouthWorks program (and how you can apply), and speak broadly about how we can change our assumptions about mentorship when it comes to age, race, and socioeconomic status. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Finding Confidence in Clothes

5.6% of people in Baltimore City find themselves unemployed. A few years ago, Diane was one of them. She had a series of personal struggles that left her feeling like finding a job was next-to-impossible. We'll spend the first part of our show getting to know Diane – and then we'll zoom out and learn more about the non-profit that helped get her back on her feet. We'll also ask questions about how and why a person finds themselves unemployed – and just how difficult it can be to find stable employment after a personal setback. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

Poetic Justice: Activism___ Equity___ and the Arts

Baltimore's nonprofit arts and culture sector is a $606 million industry supporting more than 15,000 full-time jobs and generating $54.5 million in local and state revenue.But just how accessible are these artistic jobs? Who is benefiting from our thriving cultural sector \u8211\u are the arts equitable? These are some of the questions we\u8217\ull be discussing today.

Restoring Communities through Urban Agriculture and Health Initiatives

On this episode of Life in the Balance, we meet Ausar Daniels, a Baltimore activist who believes that the way we interact with food can change everything. With 28,000 households in Maryland considered food insecure, the risk of chronic disease is high. We\u8217\ull talk with health policy officials and advisors to better understand the detrimental effects of poor nutrition.

A New Life and A Green Career

Today on the show, we meet Shakia Dawkins \u8211\u a young Mom who was feeling a little lost \u8211\u until she found Civic Works Green Career Center.We'll learn how the green economy is offering new opportunities to city resident and how a focus on job training and resiliency can truly change a person\u8217\us life.We\u8217\ull also discuss the future of sustainability and conservationism in our state \u8211\u and how a focus on Green Careers can be a benefit for both our economy and our environment.

Never too Late: Adult Education and Literacy

It's September \u8211\u back to school time for a lot of kids, and for some adults, including Mrs. Anna Harris, a 73 year woman in pursuit of her GED. On this episode, we confront some of the sobering statistics surrounding education in Baltimore and learn more about Learning is for Tomorrow, or LIFT, an organization that believes in the limitless potential of adult learners. Guests on this episode include: Mark Pettis, Executive Director, LIFT. Tara Brown, Assistant Professor, University of Maryland, College of Education.

A Decade Behind Bars: The Reality of Life Post-Incarceration (Encore)

As we approach one year since Life in the Balance premiered, we're revisting our very first episode: we meet Danny Miller, a man sentenced to thirty years in prison at the age of seventeen after a fight with a friend turned deadly. When he gets out early on parol, he struggles to find a job in a society that seems more determined than ever to keep him on the sidelines. Host Aaron Henkin listens to Danny's life story - along with a panel of experts on post-incarceration - and asks, how and why does a man find himself in this situation, and what can we do to help?