What better way to learn than through an adventure around the city? The Detroit Justice Center (DJC), a nonprofit law firm, is hosting a scavenger hunt fundraiser on Aug. 31 to teach Detroiters about Black August and the local Black liberation movement. 

Black August is an annual commemoration to remember Black activists and organizers who fought and continue to fight for liberation. It started in California prisons in 1979 to honor the lives of Black political prisoners who died while incarcerated. Throughout the month, activists raise awareness of the oppressive conditions in U.S. prisons and call for the release of political prisoners.

DJC’s mission to end all forms of policing and mass incarceration aligns with Black August. They advocate to support individuals impacted by incarceration through bail funds and individual legal services. 

It can sometimes be difficult for people to wrap their heads around what that advocacy work actually looks like, said DJC Associate Director of Development Lejla Bajgori?. 

The scavenger hunt will give players an experiential look at what that work entails, she said, “so they can have a concrete sense of what it looks like to fight a seemingly-abstract fight against something like mass incarceration.”

The hunt begins at 4:30 p.m. at Oakland Avenue Urban Farm, one of DJC’s community partners. The two organizations worked together to establish one of Detroit’s first community land trusts. Players will use their creative brainpower and a little research to solve clues that explore the city’s relationship to the abolitionist movement and how DJC operates. The clues will take them places like a courthouse where the nonprofit has cases or a worker-owned cooperative DJC helped establish.

The deadline to register for the family-friendly event is Aug. 25, and there’s a $20 minimum fee per adult, though supporters with the means are encouraged to donate more. Youth play for free, but also need to be registered. There’s a prize for the winning team, and all players can join DJC for a community meal back at the farm following the hunt.

Malak (she/her) believes in local journalism that provides people with verified and comprehensive information. Her favorite places to unwind and pick up a new read are at Detroit’s bookstores and libraries.