Beyond the Big House Podcast, hosted by Dr Tess Bartlett, is a podcast about creativity and criminal justice. This podcast brings you thought provoking conversations and stories about creativity and criminal justice from experts, practitioners, researchers, artists, musicians and people with lived experience of the criminal justice system.
06 - White Lion and working with at risk young people with Jeff Hamilton
In this episode I talk with Jeff Hamilton. At the time of the interview, Jeff was working as the Victorian State Manager for White Lion. Jeff was passionate about working with at risk young people in his role at White Lion, an organisation that works with young people in the youth justice and out of home care system. Jeff talks about the different programs offered by White Lion and the importance of patience, tolerance and resilience when working with young people and how these are passed on to young people using role modelling and mindfulness. A lot of these young people have histories of emotional, physical and sexual abuse and a lot of trauma. White Lion case manage around 2500 young people and without White Lion their situations would worsen. The organisation is very focused on sustainability and being able to support the young person over a period of time. This allows them to have long term ongoing beneficial effects in their lives. Jeff shares some really inspiring stories about young people who have gone on to gain employment and stayed in that employment for five years or more and have done so because White Lion gives people a second chance. Jeff talks about the media's role in how the public perceive young offenders and how if we are able to change this perception to be one that views them as vulnerable young people who have been through a lot, rather than bad young people, then we can be part of helping them on a positive journey and pathway.
Jeff now works as a youth coordinator for Cumberland Council. For more information about how to support White Lion by mentoring a young person or offering them employment visit https://www.whitelion.asn.au/
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05 - The Beat Within - writing in juvenile halls in San Fran with David Inocencio
In this episode, I talk with David Inocencio from The Beat Within. David talks about his upbringing and how he always thought he was going to follow in his father's footsteps and be a photographer, but instead in the late 1980s and early 90s that he found that he wanted to do something different and give back to the community in some ways. It was just the beginning of the gangster rap and crime rates were climbing in San Francisco and across the States and people were learning about it through music like Public Enemy and Ice Cube. David decided he wanted to make a change and was going to become a social worker and work with young people. He got a degree in social work and became a youth advocate working with young people. Some of the young people started opening up to him and sharing their journals and stories with him. At that stage there was nowhere to share these stories. But he wanted to create a platform to give them a voice. In mid-September 1996 Tupac was murdered and all the young people were devastated by his death and he asked them to write about it. The writing was incredibly powerful and he knew he had to do something with it and that was the birth of The Beat Within. From that point on he has committed the last 22 years of his life to giving a voice to young people who feel like they don't have a voice. It has grown beyond San Francisco and is a publication that has been incorporated into schools, community organisations, with adults in the adult system, and young people in juvenile halls and the community. He gets about 500 to 600 letters a month from people who have come across the writing or past writers who want to share their stories. You can learn more about the The Beat Within by heading to http://www.thebeatwithin.org/ or at https://www.facebook.com/thebeatwithin/. This episode is brought to you by Audible. With over 400,000 audiobooks to download you can access your 30 day free trial with two free audiobooks by heading to http://thissimplespace.com/audible Listen on apple podcasts or Spotify and if you like what you hear the best way you can support the show is to leave a review on apple podcasts and share it with someone you know.
04 - Life in prison and poetry - the 'magical form of expression' with Tony Bull
Tony has been out of prison for about seven years. He talks about his life growing up in a good home and how he chose to take a different path into property crime. At that time, he was Ted Bull. He talks about how committing crime for him was like an addiction and gave him an adrenalin rush and so he just wanted more. Once he'd committed the first offence the rush continued for about 30 years. It was the prison Spartans Debating Club that was able to change everything for Tony. He also wrote so much poetry, which helped him through as it allowed him to express himself emotionally, which is impossible to do in prison. He notes that poetry is 'a magical form of expression and is sometimes the only form of expression'. It helped him deal with the solitary confines of a cell that he was in for about 18 hours a day. Tony believes that for young men who might have that same impulse or drive to get the rush from committing crime it's about being able to find the connections they have with what they love doing that is not related to crime. We also talk a lot about identity and how important it is for those exiting the prison. He notes the change in identity that he's had to alter from his 'criminal' identity to the identity he now has in the community. He has had to work on that in order to change. He believes he was saved by a fishing boat and spent three years out on the water which resulted in him changing. If he wasn't able to escape and be out on the ocean he wouldn't have been able to change. It was the easiest place in the world to recreate. He also talks about how important it is to be with the community that accepts you and believes in you. He says that they no longer see him as the person he used to be and therefore he doesn't see himself as the person he used to be. This episode is brought to you by Audible. With over 400,000 audiobooks to download you can access your 30 day free trial with two free audiobooks by heading to http://thissimplespace.com/audible. Listen below or via apple podcasts or Spotify and if you like what you hear, please leave a review on apple podcasts and share it with someone you know.
03 - The Read Along Dad's prison program with Lisa D'Onofrio
Lisa D'Onofrio is a writer, facilitator of creative journaling workshops, literacy advocate, festival director and the facilitator of the Read Along Dad's programs with fathers in prisons in Victoria, Australia. Today we discuss Lisa's love of words and books and the influence this has had in her life. From the influence of her parents who were big readers and encouraged her to read books at home and at the library, where this became one of her greatest passions, to the work she now does in prisons facilitating the Read Along Dad's program with incarcerated people. Being able to give people the opportunity to express their stories has always been the driving incentive behind the work that she has done. She did a course in professional writing, and then lived in England for 17 years where she found her own way in her career path, before moving back to Australia in 2010 and setting up a children's literature festival and was asked by the Friends of the Castlemaine Library (FOCAL) to go into prison and run a literacy program in prisons. This became the Read Along Dad's program, based on the Storybook Dads program in the United Kingdom, which is a program for those in prison. The incarcerated person, for example a father, picks a book to read to their child and then reads it out loud while it is being recorded. The recording is then sent to the child along with the book and they can read along to the book while listening to their father's voice. It is now run in two male prisons and one female prison in Victoria. Lisa mentions the courage that is shown by those in prison when reading and recording these stories and the way that it allows conversations to open up between parents and children. Lisa also talks about the challenges in running programs like Read Along Dads in prisons, such as bureaucracy but also the importance of rapport and persistence in running programs in prisons. Lisa also does a creative writing, shared literacy, and book club in prisons and gives people the opportunity to talk about things that are separate to the prison whilst facilitating connection between people. You can learn more about Read Along Dad's at http://readalongdads.org.au or on Twitter at https://twitter.com/Readalongdads .This episode is brought to you by Audible. With over 400,000 audiobooks to download you can access your 30 day free trial with two free audiobooks by heading to http://thissimplespace.com/audible. Listen on apple podcasts or Spotify and if you like what you hear leave a review and share it with someone you know.
02 - The Inside Out Prison Exchange Program with Marietta Martinovic
Marietta Martinovic is a senior lecturer in Global Studies at RMIT and the first Australian academic to complete the Inside Out Prison Exchange Program training in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 2008. We talk about how Marietta came to be studying and teaching in corrections and her involved in Inside Out and how it took her eight years to get it up and running in Australia. Inside Out is a program where 'Inside' students work alongside 'Outside' students within a prison environment for an entire semester. Marietta talks about what a day in the Inside Out program looks like for the students involved, where the lived criminal justice experience meets the text book experience. For the students involved it's not just about the criminal justice system it's about personal growth with student's often saying 'This is life changing'. Marietta discusses the Think Tanks that have emerged from Inside Out, where past students from Inside Out come together in the prison on a voluntary basis and have become advocacy groups; working on projects to either improve the incarceration experience or reduce the likelihood of reoffending after incarceration. Marietta said: 'If you believe in something, keep at it, don't give up, there's always a way.' You can learn more about the Inside Out Prison Exchange Program by heading to the RMIT website or check out Marietta's RMIT profile to contact her for more information. This episode is brought to you by Audible. With over 400,000 audiobooks to download you can access your 30 day free trial with two free audiobooks by by heading to http://thissimplespace.com/audible. Listen on apple podcasts or Spotify and if you like what you hear leave a review and share it with someone you know.
01 - The power of music with musician and educator Warren Maxwell
Warren Maxwell is a musician and one of the founding members of Trinity Roots. He is also a senior lecturer at Massey University, and he has been involved in some incredible creative projects over the years. We discuss Warren's upbringing in Whangarei New Zealand and the influence of his parents and family on the direction he took with his life. We also discuss the power of community and connection, his creative process, and the healing power of music and also delve into the TV series Songs From the Inside that Warren was involved in. This series takes four musicians into prisons in NZ to work with prisoners to write music, poetry, and create an album. Warren talks about the importance of longevity in programs in the criminal justice system and the need for preventative strategies that focus on celebrating Indigenous cultures. If you want to learn more about Warren and to hear his music head to www.trinityroots.co.nz or search for Trinity Roots on Spotify or iTunes. This episode is brought to you by Audible. With over 400,000 audiobooks to download you can access your 30 day free trial with two free audiobooks by heading to http://thissimplespace.com/audible. Listen on apple podcasts or Spotify and if you like what you hear leave a review and share it with someone you know.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Engaging and thought provoking
Thanks Dr Tess Bartlett for creating a space for discussion about the healing and connective qualities of art making, especially for those falling through the cracks in the justice systems, which favours punishment over rehabilitation. Gives one hope that with more spotlight on the topic and evidence of its positive impacts those with money and power might begin to support these projects and interventions.
Dr Tess Bartlett and guests offer deep and informative insights into the criminal justice system and its impacts. By prioritising creativity and affective storytelling, audiences gain a deeper understanding of how the criminal justice system can damage and create ripples throughout societies. Tess is a great interviewer, allowing her guests to open up and talk without interruption. Really wonderful listening for anyone interested in the broader social impacts of justice and masculinities.
Really enjoyed this episode, some great thought provoking concepts and ideas discussed. I love the thought of creativity being a respected form or Avenue of wellness, connectivity, health etc - to be drawn upon more intrinsically for the betterment of society. (Rather than just a form of entertainment). What is the creative spaces true value that we can be utilising? Especially for our young, marginalised or more at risk members of society.