e-Community Broadcasting, Winner 2013
Kumaon Vani is a community radio station set up by TERI in Mukteshwar in Nainital district of Uttarakhand. Located at an altitude of more than 2286 m, it reaches out to nearly 500 villages in Nainital, Bhimtal, Almora, Ranikhet, Champawat, Devidhura, Pithoragarh, Betalghat, Sheetlakhet, Kausani, Gwaldham and Bagheshwar. Kumao Vani also uses IVR and mobile technologies to reach wider population with phone-in facility also
Kumaon Vani is operated, owned and driven by the local communities in Mukteshwar. The main agenda of Kumaon Vani is growth and development of Kumaon region by promoting knowledge and information on agriculture, horticulture, social issues and governance. ‘Kumaon Vani’ is among the 150 functional community radio stations in the country that have been granted license by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Government of India. It covers a population of nearly 200,000 people, which is pre-dominantly an agricultural community. It has a feature called Mobile Vani, which is an IVR system (Interactive Voice Response) that al-lows people to call into a number and leave a message about their community, or listen to messages left by others.
The radio also discusses social problems in the community like bringing together people against domestic violence, generating awareness about environmental conservation etc. There is increasing participation by women in studio programmes, live interviews and phone-ins. They are voicing their opinions more readily than before on issues affecting their welfare. Children are given simple lessons on health and hygiene in an entertaining way through programmes like “Galli Galli Sim Sim”. The local youth have been able to take advantage of the information being given about em-ployment opportunities in organisations like ITBP etc.
Chak de Chotu is an interesting community radio programme started by Noida based community radio called Salaam Namaste. The program high-lights issues of child labour and works towards helping child labourers have a better life. It gives them an opportunity to express themselves on the radio, share their stories and also find ways to get support and help. Chak de Chotu has success-fully created awareness among the neighbourhood about the grave issues of rampant child labour.
Most of the “Chotus”(a popular name for young boys who are employed for work) working at tea stalls, construction sites or any local shops are deprived of normal privileges of life. They are mainly victims of child labour, economic distress, no education and in turn have no childhood. Helping such children have a better life by helping them go to schools, express themselves on radio,play games, share their stories and learn to support themselves is the motto of the programme –’Chakh De Chotu’.
To help such Chotu’s to escape from being victimised, Salaam Namaste started this programme to help underprivileged kids. Such kids are also part of a literacy mission called “Akshar Gyan” under the concept of Abhinav Vidyalaya. They are also sent to privileged schools with NGOs and associations working for such kids.
Radio programmes like ‘Bal Majdoori Hatao’ is also a production of Salaam Namaste. Since these children have become Chotus, due of economic distress, their family members are given em-ployment either at the institution or at the staff members’ homes.
Radio Benziger is a hospital based community radio reaching out to villages of Kollam. It is engaged to empower people belonging to the marginalised communities. Nearly 35,000 people have directly participated in radio programmes in less than two years. Radio Benziger has established 25 radio clubs in Kollam, and 100,000 school children listen to educational programmes.
Radio Benziger is an innovative initiative undertaken by Benziger hospital as an attempt to reach out to local communities. The radio provides a platform where members of the community come together to interact and share information, knowledge and skills regarding issues such as climate change, safe drinking water, sanitation, life style diseases and monsoon related communicable diseases that concern them. The radio also joins crusades against social evils like alcoholism, dowry, substance abuse, garbage menace, suicides etc. Marine weather, with all its details is broadcasted on a daily basis with the help of Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services (INCOIS). This information is a boon to the fishermen at sea. The largest listener group is from the coastal areas of Kollam, especially women and children. Nearly 100,000 school children listen to the educational programmes produced by the State Institute of Educational Technology (SIET).
People can call at any time during broadcast hours to a specified number and tell whatever they have to say, be it a grievance, or an opinion about a particular issue or a relevant information or a suggestion. The matter is broadcasted through radio facilitating a public discussion. Many grievances receive immediate relief through the prompt response of the authorities.
Jan Vani is the first campus based community radio service in Uttarakhand. The radio works towards bridging the information gaps within the local communities and especially with the farmers with relevant information related to agriculture and allied fields. More than 1100 hours of program has been broadcasted by Pant Nagar Jan Vani.
The objective of Pantnagar Janvani is to bridge the information gaps with latest and relevant information related to agriculture and allied fields, health, education, occupation, culture, traditions and almost all practical areas of daily life. The project brings a scenario of participatory development through community mobilisation.
Krishi Sandesh is a signature programme in which, it broadcasts a daily programme based on agricultural technologies that are related to the need, season and recent technological developments. Agricultural scientists, who are directly working on related research projects come in those programme to address the needs of the farmers. Gaon Ki Baat is yet another very popular capsulein which farmers directly ask questions related to their agricultural problems and concerned scientists address their problems and provide them solutions. This programme has emerged as a single window solution provider for farmers. Spreaded throughout the Tarai region in the foothills of Himalays, the main target of Pantnagar Janvani is the local community of this region. The team from community radio visits local communities every day to prepare community-based programmes. Total 1068 hours of programmes had been broadcasted by Pantnagar Janvani up to May 31,2013 since its inception. Pantnagar Janvani has also developed and broadcasted three farm radio schools on rice cultivation, sugarcane and organic farming. They have also launched two more radio schools on communication skills, yoga and naturopathy. These radio schools have demonstrated significant impact on cognitive and psycho-motor levels.