A one-day training programme was conducted by Commonwealth Educational Media Centre for Asia (CEMCA) in Chennai for the South Indian officials running Community Radio Stations. Two Coordinators from Sarvam, Pudiya Udayam Community Radio 91.2 had the privilege to participate in this workshop. Around 54 participants from various community radio stations attended this training programme and learnt a lot on how useful and successful a community radio station can serve the society.
The main objective of this training programme was to make the officials understand the significance of community radio stations and also to create awareness on various new aspects that can be introduced in the community radio stations. Various resource persons who are stalwarts in community radio stations, conducted the training and explained many useful topics in participatory method.
The initial discussions were about the status of all the community radio stations in south India. This was much useful for the participants to know the different community radio stations that are present all over south India.
Next, the significance of the different types of programmes that can be broadcasted through community radio stations were explained in detail. The trainers said that community radio stations played a vital role in developing the community and also in helping the downtrodden people. Trainers also explained about the various types of programmes that can be broadcasted in the community radio stations so that the public will get the fullest benefit out of them.
Thirdly, the power of community radio stations was explained to all the participants. The trainers explained that they play a vital role in creating awareness about many aspects that are in the community.
The importance of local skills for the enchantment of community radio stations were also discussed. The trainers mentioned that local skills and people from the local community are very much important to run the community radio stations and these resources should be tapped. The trainers also added that the reach of the community radio station will be more if the local skills are utilised.
Methods to run the community radio station in a self-sustainable manner were also discussed.
Another important factor which was discussed during the training was about the reach of the community radio station. Trainers emphasised on the need for more reach of these stations so that it will be easy to run the station successfully. Tips were shared on how to improve the reach of these stations to a large number of people. Broadcasting the programmes on YouTube and other online channels to estimate the number of viewers were also discussed in this meeting. This will help us to keep a record of programmes that are preferred by the people and more such programmes can be produced and uploaded in the future.
The importance of listeners was explained by the trainers and they said that only when more number of people listens to the programmes there is a point in running the station successfully and in an enthusiastic manner.
The challenges and the ways to face and come out of them were also discussed in this meeting.
Each participant was given an opportunity to speak about the types of programmes that are broadcasted in their community radio stations. Mr. P Sivamani from our Puthiya Udhayam community radio station, spoke on using our community radio station to broadcast the awareness on Digital Financial Literacy. Also he explained about various skill training programs that are given by the Government, the Indian Bank and various other organizations which are being broadcasted in the Pudhia Udhayam community Radio Station.
This was very well accepted by all and this program served as a better opportunity to learn more about community radio stations and also about various ways to utilise the community radio stations effectively.