IPDC project priority: Community Media Development

Thanks to its position and experience, Radio Nacional del Paraguay (RNP) is best suited to train community radio broadcasters on a regular basis. However, RNP's technical equipment is not sufficient to offer quality training courses. For this reason the training purposes require the purchase of additional studio equipment. In its operational planning objectives RNP declared to contribute to the improvement and democratic distribution of information and consequently joined forces with Asociación para la Educación y Comunicación Radiofónica (the association of broadcast education and...

The community radio sector in West, Central, Eastern and Southern Africa suffers from sustainability and capacity shortcomings to actually implement the community radio mission of public service to provide communities with self-help for social, economic and cultural development. Furthermore, national community radio networks organised with the goal of strengthening the organisational development of their members have so far been effective only in a few countries: Ghana, Mali and South Africa. While some national networks have been highly successful in mobilising the community radio...

While community radios are protected by Uruguayan law, legislation is less supportive in Argentina, where community radios are not licensed in many provinces. Although freedom of press is formally guaranteed in both countries, media concentration and commercialization represent common threats to true participation and plurality. Vocational training for journalists and media professionals, especially in community radios, is crucial to consolidate democratization processes. This is especially important in the border region of Salto (Uruguay) and Concordia (Argentina), where strengthening of...

The Chama district is far away (more than 330 km) from Lusaka, Zambia's capital city where the media industries and institutions are located. The national radio signal barely reaches this province and newspapers: monthlies, weeklies and dailies are a rarity. Most of the citizens of this area end up listening to Malawian radio, even reading newspapers from the same country, which is not ideal for the building of a national identity. The illiteracy rate is very high because of the long distances to schools and the natural barriers like hills and rivers, which lead pupils to drop out of...

While established and secure, the media industries in Jamaica see little competition from new or different organizations in their markets. In addition, there are very few local and community mediums to address relevant issues not covered by the major outlets. This is especially true in rural areas, such as Spring Village in rural St. Catherine. Jamaica is also currently experiencing an exponential rise in its use of and reliance upon computers and the internet. This trend has correlated with the embracement of several types of digital media that have until recently been associated with...

In Malawi, severe floods occur regularly in six river basin systems. The highest flood frequency has been recorded in the Lower Shire Valley, covering Nsanje and Chikwawa Districts. For the communities living in these areas, better information could considerably lessen human suffering: improved meteorological services giving accurate and timely information about the weather patterns can alert the population to be better prepared for the coming of rains, and hence enable them to move to higher grounds with their livestock to carry educational and medical equipment to safer areas. The...

The main problems confronting Haitian community media are a lack of equipment; high cost of internet access in Haiti; the poverty of the communities; insufficient problem of electricity supply, especially in remote areas; training of young coordinators; and the lack of legislation on community media. The development and strengthening of a network of community radios in remote regions of the country would contribute to the creation of a pluralist society and to fostering equal access to information. Such a network would therefore constitute an essential and effective strategy for achieving...

In Namibia rural dwellers in the remote areas do not have a platform to present their voices of concerns in a language they understand to those delegated with the responsibility to govern them. However, only few indigenous language newspapers currently exist in Namibia, such as the Caprivi Vision newspaper, which is published in English and Silozi and mainly distributed in the Caprivi region. The lack of training skills in news reporting, graphic design, marketing management and the lack of equipment such as printing facilities and computers still hinder the publication from improving its...

Media pluralism is a recent phenomenon in Chad, so much so that, as is often the case in countries in which pluralism of expression is embraced against a backdrop of poverty, the professional challenges are multiple. Today, however, the Chadian media can be viewed as a vanguard in pluralism of expression. Nevertheless, Chadian journalists are threatened and arrested in the exercise of their profession, and the media landscape is characterized by a lack of training among journalists, in writing for radio for production techniques, and among first-level maintenance technicians, as well as a...

Nkhata Bay (and Usisya, the location where the radio will be installed), are in a 'shadow area' of the communication and information services. Radio signals from the Malawi Broadcasting Corporation and other radio stations barely reach the district, and the citizens have now resorted to Tanzanian Radio stations, thus adversely affecting a sense of belonging to the Malawi nation. The lack of a relevant medium of communication has meant that the population cannot meaningfully participate in issues relating to the rule of law, human rights, development and decision-making. Rural women and...

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