IPDC project priority: Community Media Development

Since the 90s, with the advent of democratic process and successive government action taken to open up the audio-visual sector, great strides have been made in the Central African media landscape. The implementation of community-radio development programmes, supported by the UNESCO subregional office in Yaoundé, has led to the establishment of several community radios. Today, the country boasts close to 100 community and rural radios, as well as a 40-member national network of community radio operators—the ReRaC—, which seeks to promote good governance, and the conservation and sustainable...

This project will put in place a “community radio caravan” that will visit locations with existing or potential community media outlets in the Kyrgyz Republic. The caravan's team will consist of representatives from existing community radios, who will share their experience with the host communities. This 10-day activity will help to foster the network of community media initiatives and build capacity for peer-to-peer assistance. Exchanging and comparing best-practice experience will strengthen the commitment for cooperation and dialogue among the community radio initiatives and minimize...

The importance of community-access radio in promoting social and community development, basic education, and models of good governance has been widely acknowledged in the international community. According to the World Association of Community Broadcasters’ 2007 report on community radio (CR) and its social impact, this form of development communication has contributed to poverty reduction and sustainable development, fostered broader non-partisan political communication within countries (including peace building and conflict resolution), helped to engage marginalized or excluded...

Cambodia is still suffering from the effects of the genocidal Khmer Rouge regime of the 1970s and the ensuing years of civil strife. The legacy of these historical factors is manifold, but two major effects are the prevalence of a voiceless and fragmented civil society, unable or unwilling to speak up about basic rights, and the continuation of repressive or corrupt state systems. This is particularly noticeable in the constraints placed upon freedom of expression and media plurality in Cambodia. The adoption of the new penal code in 2010 potentially limits freedom of expression and...

As the illiteracy rate in the rural areas is still high, radio is the most commonly used medium of the rural people in Cambodia to receive information, with almost every family in the provinces owning a radio set. Although provincial radio stations do exist in more than 10 provinces in Cambodia, most of their programming content is relayed from the Radio Nationale Kampuchea (RNK) in Phnom Penh. Therefore, the majority of programmes do not serve the specific requirements of the community people since the information needs of provincial people are different, not least in geographical terms....

The development of the radio sector in Lao PDR is slow, especially in the northern, mountainous part of the country where radio signal cannot reach many communities. Like the rest of the country’s media sector, Lao National Radio lacks the equipment for developing radio networks. Its capacity needs to be enhanced if it is to compete with international broadcasters and growing new media.
 
Nearly 44 percent of the country’s total population (6.3 million) is regarded as a member of various minority ethnic groups. Xiengkho District, one of the 47 poorest districts of Laos, has...

In many rural areas of Nepal, Community Radios (CR) represent the only form of media available, providing services to the marginalized and disadvantaged people who have often been ignored by mainstream media. With the continued increase of the CRs, effective implementation of a Code of Conduct has become vital to build on self-regulatory mechanisms in enhancing CR professionals’ unbiased coverage, honesty, accuracy and reliability. This project will establish a mechanism to hold CRs accountable to play a greater role as a watchdog. Self-regulation is a function that lies at the very the...

Media in Bhutan has undergone considerable growth after the establishment of democracy in 2008. Today, mass communication in Bhutan encompasses both traditional and New Media technologies, ranging from newspapers, radio and TV to mobile phones and the internet. According to a UNESCO-supported Media Development Assessment (MDA) conducted in Bhutan in 2010, there are vital elements missing in the media landscape which need to be addressed. These include policy and legal frameworks to support the growth of media; Right to Information laws to ensure transparency and good governance; Fiscal and...

There are more than ten thousand low-power radios in Brazil, most of them community radios. The applicable law on community radios, 9.612/98, imposes many limitations on their activities, including preventing community radio stations from broadcasting advertisements or belonging to a network, thus constraining their potential. Community radio stations throughout Brazil exist despite the lack of training policies or subsidies for improved development of communication activities, leading to problems in sustainability and a tendency to copy commercial models of communication.
 
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The means of creating and maintaining effective, culturally appropriate radio learning programmes on-air requires consistent support. This project presents opportunities for long term partnership solutions to this problem, expanding networks of collaboration and enhancing the long-term development of community media in the Caribbean. Its purpose is to train social development workers to create community radio content as another platform for participatory communication with vulnerable groups. Participants will include healthcare workers, social workers, teachers and police officers who will...

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