Hana Baba

News Reporter/Host

Hana Baba is a reporter and host of Crosscurrents, KALW's evening newsmagazine. She's also part of KALW's project The Spiritual Edge.

She interviews and reports on ethnic communities, poverty, health, culture, religion, arts, and the global nature of the San Francisco Bay Area.  Her work also appears on NPR programs, PRI's The World, BBC World Service, and New America Media. A Sudanese-American, Hana also reports from and about Sudan and Sudanese.

Ways to Connect

Photo courtesy of Alicia Reyes

 

The Alameda County Bookmobile tours the county with books, magazines, CDs, DVDs and most everything else you can find at your local library. 

FLICKR USER Matthias Müller, USED UNDER CC / RESIZED AND CROPPED

Shane Bauer witnessed prison life firsthand during his four months undercover as a guard at the Winn Correctional Center, a private prison in Louisiana. What he experienced is detailed in a report he wrote for Mother Jones.

Simply the Basics Facebook page/Resized

Meeting personal hygiene needs are hard when you're living on the street. But a new nonprofit is trying to change that. Simply the Basics launched just last year and is providing homeless shelters and nonprofits with basic hygienic needs like tampons- but also soap, toothpaste, deodorant and other personal care items that help keep people healthy, but also help them live with dignity. It’s called the Hygiene Bank. Meghan Freebeck is founder of Simply the Basics. She spoke with KALW's Hana Baba.

Courtesy of rossvalleyplayers.com.

Ever since high school, people have pronounced Irma Herrera’s name wrong. When she'd correct their pronunciation, they'd ask where she was from, as if it was a foreign name. “I’m a fifth generation South Texan,” she’d say.

Hana Baba

This is a field trip.

East Bay school kids going to the California Academy of  Sciences - pretty typical, right? Wrong.

This is the weekend school of the Sudanese Association of Northern California, or SANC, where Sudanese kids come every Sunday to learn their parents’ mother tongue and immerse themselves in Sudanese poetry, folklore, music, and spirituality.  Even this bus ride from San Leandro to San Francisco is a cultural lesson in disguise.

Hana Baba

All of Delaine Eastin Elementary School’s 863 students — plus 18 teachers and staff — are on the school tarmac, formed into squares of eight dancers each on one sunny morning. Ivan DeSouza, also known as Mr. D., is the music teacher; he's teamed up with the PE coaches to help the kids try to break the Guinness world record for largest square dance today. 

KALW

KALW's Hana Baba is African. KALW's Leila Day is African American. In between making radio stories and interviews for Crosscurrents, they've had MANY casual conversations on the side ... many of them about black identity.

"Day 13: My morning at DMV" by Flickr user Vicky Sedgwick. Used under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 / cropped and resized

When it comes to undocumented immigrants applying for an AB 60 driver's license, it has been especially hard for people whose country is not on the list of countries whose nationals are approved to apply for AB 60, whose passports contain an electronic chip.

"Fullerton DMV" by Flickr user Micah Sittig. Used under CC BY 2.0 / cropped and resized.

 

AB 60 — a year-old law allowing undocumented immigrants to apply for driver's licenses — hasn’t worked the same for everyone. For some people, like Ghanaian national Eko Croffie, a small complication can mean a long journey ahead.

 

Courtesy of Wear Your Voice

For Ravneet Vohra, founder of Oakland-based magazine Wear Your Voice, getting dressed is more than a matter of clothes — it’s an act of reclaiming identity. Vohra was sexually abused as a young child, and after years of feeling disempowered, she’s now on a mission to break the silence around the many things we keep hush. KALW's Hana Baba sat down with Vohra to learn more.

"Facebook" by Flickr user Chris. Used under CC BY-SA 2.0 / cropped and resized

 

If you're on Facebook, you’ve probably noticed the new emojis you can use to express your feelings in reaction to a post. For those of you who don't know: Before, you could only "like" a post. But now you can also express anger, sadness, shock and love, too.

 

Tim Hussin

 

 

Talking to peers can be a vital tool for making it through dark times. But what happens when your friends and loved ones aren’t around anymore? That’s the situation for many older gay men in San Francisco, whose community was decimated by the AIDS epidemic of the 1980s and 1990s.

From Donald Trump’s attack of Latinos, to Ted Cruz's call to 'patrol and secure Muslim neighborhoods', some of the political rhetoric this year can be downright depressing.

Image courtesy of Global Press Institute.

Reporter Cristi Hegranes trains women around the world to take control of their stories.

Eli Wirtschafter

The East Bay’s congressional representative Barbara Lee (CA-13) introduced a bill last year that would greatly expand access to abortions. It gets rid of what’s called the Hyde Amendment, the restriction on abortion spending by the federal government.

Image by Flickr user Youth Radio, under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 / cropped and resized

 

 

For decades, media has treated the Saudi Arabian woman as the posterchild for female oppression. But changes in the Kingdom are now challenging that image.

 

Courtesy San Francisco Public Defender's Office / cropped and resized

 

On July 1st last year, Kate Steinle was shot and killed. An undocumented man, Juan Francisco Lopez-Sanchez, is currently on trial for her murder. The shooting spurred anti-immigrant groups nationwide, who rallied to end Sanctuary City policies – polices that limit how much city employees may help Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Critics say they protect undocumented people from being handed over to immigration authorities – even when they commit a crime.

 

Therapy for therapists

Feb 25, 2016
Guy McPherson. www.thetraumatherapistproject.com

 

Guy McPherson is a trauma therapist from Oakland who spends many hours a day talking to people who have gone through life changing accidents, marital abuse, and war. Hearing about pain and suffering over and over takes a toll, and McPherson says that many of his colleagues feel the same.

Courtesy Edward Miguel

Some scientists are saying that you can’t talk about the global refugee crisis without talking about another crisis: climate change.

Image cropped and modified from http://marcibowers.com/

Dr. Marci Bowers is an OBGYN with a practice in Burlingame, and she's a global leader in her field. She also may be the first gender reassignment surgeon to have undergone the surgery herself.

Aspen Baker / resized and cropped

Aspen Baker is on a mission to help people listen to each other. Baker’s the founder of Exhale, an Oakland-based non-profit she formed in 2000 after she had an abortion. Baker grew up in a born-again Christian family and abortion wasn’t something she ever thought would happen to her. Until it did. 

Courtesy of CAIR - San Francisco Bay Area

Anti-Muslim sentiment around the U.S. is on the rise. The uptick started right after the attacks in Paris in November. Then came the December shootings in San Bernardino, and Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s call for a ban on Muslim entry into the country.

There are hidden costs attached to almost everything we buy. T-shirts, mortgages, and hamburgers.  In the book “The Value of Nothing: How to reshape market society and redefine democracy,” Raj Patel argues that even a hamburger may have hidden ecological and social costs of as much as $200. 


On today’s episode of “Crosscurrents,” we are talking about identity. We have heard how people, whether intentionally or not, can “pass” as another race, just by the sound of their voice. Passing can also be a full-time, physical endeavor. The United States has a long history of African Americans who chose to live as white in their daily lives. 

Interview: Steven Hill

Dec 1, 2015
Courtesy of Steven Hill

The Sharing Economy is a term we’ve heard a lot in the past couple of years, with companies like Uber, AirBnb, and Taskrabbit on the rise.

Image source: http://bit.ly/1NM4Qqs

In 2014, the annual mean wage an American teacher made was a little over $57,000 a year.

Teacher pay in the Bay Area is higher than the national average, and salaries vary depending on where you're located: This year, a teacher in Oakland can make up to $83,000 a year, whereas the same teacher can go to Hillsborough and make up to $124,000.

Josh Harkinson

Last July, 32- year old San Francisco resident Kate Steinle was walking along San Francisco’s Embarcadero, when she was shot and killed on Pier 14. The man who allegedly shot her, Juan Francisco Lopez-Sanchez, an undocumented immigrant from Mexico had been deported  from the U.S. multiple times, with seven felonies on his record. The case has raised the issue of San Francisco being what’s called a “Sanctuary City,” a status it’s had since 1989.

Bay Area Beats: Zena

Sep 14, 2015

Zena, from Oakland, is a singer songwriter, visual artist, storyteller –  and one of the few women masters of the kora – a West African harp – taught directly by Malian kora master, Toumani Diabate. She blends West African music with American Delta Blues and Appalachian tunes, to create what she calls "Afrofolk." Zena came to our studios - kora in hand- to tell KALW's Hana Baba about her story of migration and music.

Hana Baba

Through much of their history, Sunni and Shia Muslims have lived peacefully together in countries like Lebanon, Syria, and Iraq. But since the US invasion of Iraq in 2003, sectarian conflict has escalated in the region. Here in the Bay Area,  around 75% of Muslims identify as Sunni, just four percent identify as Shia.

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