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"Who wants to get ill before their time? Nobody."

In this special bonus episode, we talk with Rosamund Adoo-Kissi-Debrah, founder and director of The Ella Roberta Foundation based in South London, UK. We first met Rosamund in episode 4, The Road to Change. She and her legal team made history when a coroner found a direct link between her nine-year-old daughter Ella Roberta's death from a fatal asthma attack and the air quality near her home along one of London’s busiest roads. Ella then became the first person in the world to have air pollution appear on a death certificate as a cause of death. 

"Everything I do now is more to do with making things better for everybody else."

Eleven years after this tragic life-changing event, Rosamund reflects on her journey to becoming a global clean air advocate in honor of her daughter's legacy. From her calls for greater government accountability to raising awareness of air pollution as a critical health issue, we discuss where she has seen progress and where there is still work to be done. 

This episode also features the song "Air" from the Hope 4 Justice EP, released on the 11th anniversary of Ella's death. "Air" is a powerful dedication to Ella, with lyrics written by Mercury Prize nominee ESKA and Young People's Poet Laureate for London Cecilia Knapp. Students from the John Stainer Community Primary School Choir boldly sing “I’ve got the right to breathe in my own city’s streets.” The EP was created and produced by the Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance in collaboration with leading artists and local young people. Learn more about this project here.

Rosamund Adoo-Kissi-Debrah, Founder and Director of The Ella Roberta Foundation

Further Reading

"Polluted Minds." Open Mind Magazine. April 16, 2024.

"Air Pollution May Harm Every Part of Your Body, Research Shows." Global Citizen. May 20, 2019.

"How science cleared the air over inhaled health risks." American Heart Association. May 10, 2024



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