General News

Communicating Disability Rights Through Community Radio

FemLINKPACIFIC is increasing the number of community radio hours dedicated to the promotion of disability rights when from September 5th a new weekly show hosted by disability rights advocate Moushmi Narain gets underway.

The programme โ€œLook at My Abilitiesโ€ will air live on FemTALK 89FM in Suva on Thursdays from10am to 1pm with segments also repeated during weekend broadcasts.

Radio segments will also be sent to FemLINKPACIFIC's community media centre in Labasa to feature on FemTALK 89FM Labasa which now airs daily broadcasts from 10am to 2pm on weekdays.

The promotion of disability rights is not new to the community radio station hosted by FemLINKPACIFIC.

In fact there has been a close collaboration with women leaders of the disability network in Fiji since 2002 through a range of community media initiatives which have provided a communication platform for therights of womenโ€™s living with disability in development particularly in areas such as education, employment and healthcare.

Starting as a member of the โ€œGeneration Nextโ€ project in 2006, Moushmi Narain has been producing a 30 minute feature on disability rights and now as the host of this regular week day slot is hoping that during the 4 hour show she and other disability rights activists will be able to contribute to the ongoing efforts to break down the barriers faced by women with disabilities, especially those living in rural communities:

โ€œThis is a good opportunity for people with disabilities to come and talk about their issues, also they can share their experiences and as we are dedicating 4 hours of airtime, which no other media organization is doing, it will help people and organizations that are working to advance the rights of people living with disabilities to have some visibility on the airwaves,โ€ said Narain

The weekly radio programme will include weekly segments with the Pacific Disability Forum and Fiji Disabled Peopleโ€™s Federation talking about their challenges and also their success stories on breaking barriers.

A segment dedicated to interviews which have aired in previous broadcasts featuring people living with disability will give listeners the opportunity to know what the issues were then and what progress has been made so far.

The 4 hour show will also air radio dramas to explain the diversity of people living with disability particularly to bring an end to the discrimination they face from the communities.

With the programmes coming in from across FemLINKPACIFICโ€™s community media network in Fiji it is envisaged that the broadcasts in Suva will provide an important bridge between the community and policy makers in the capital city.

The community radio programme will also provide an opportunity for the community radio audience to be better informed of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) in order to contribute to a more inclusive society for all.

This is one of the roles of community radio, says Sharon Bhagwan Rolls, FemLINKPACIFICโ€™s Executive Director and the Station Manager of FemTALK 89FM:

โ€œIt is one thing to have a convention or a policy on disability rights, but by also ensuring that the communities for whom the development agenda and processes should be accountable to are heard regularly via community radio, as a civil society partner we envisage that these additional hours will contribute to amplifying the call from a womenโ€™s rights perspective on development processes such as allocating resources, developing disability-inclusive policies and programmes, as well as monitoring and evaluating progress.โ€

Additional Information

Country: Africa
Website: N/A
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Contact Person: N/A
Source: Sharon Bhagwan Rolls
When: 17/9/2013

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