World Radio Day 2016: Radio in Times of Emergency and Disaster

World Radio Day 2016: Radio in Times of Emergency and Disaster

On February 13th World Radio Day is celebrated worldwide. This year, in recognition radio’s ability to reach the widest audience worldwide in the quickest possible time, the theme of World Radio Day 2016 is “Radio in Times of Emergency and Disaster”.

The aim of World Radio Day is to improve international cooperation between broadcasters, and to encourage major networks and community radio alike to promote access to information, freedom of expression and gender equality over the airwaves.

This year a number of activities and initiatives are taking place to celebrate the achievements of radio as a tool in disaster risk management. The World Association of Community Radio Broadcasters (AMARC) is taking this opportunity to remember the importance of community radio, to highlight the unique power of this medium to bring people together. Therefore, AMARC is asking that those involved in community radio share information regarding World Radio Day events, and audio programmes related to the key themes:

• Radio saves lives;
• Freedom of expression and journalists’ safety should be disaster-proof;
• Radio has social impact and provides access to information. People’s right to information should be protected;
• Radio frequencies should be protected in times of emergency;
• Radio empowers survivors and vulnerable people whose right to privacy is to be respected.

For more information on this initiative, please see here.

In London, SOAS Radio of the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London, will host the event ‘World Radio Day London 2016: Radio and Peacebuilding’ on the 15th February. A trade fair will be followed by a panel discussion between academics and professionals working in the field taking an in-depth look at some of the most innovative research using radio in development interventions. To find out more about this event, please see the Facebook event page here

The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) itself has conducted a series of interviews with individuals and organizations at country level who have extensive experience using radio in emergencies and for agricultural disaster risk management. These interviews provide illustrative examples of how radio can be used effectively in disaster risk management and in times of emergency.

Interviewed were Bazlur Rahman, Chief Executive Officer of the Bangladesh NGOs Network for Radio and Communication (BNNRC) (listen here), Francesco Diasio, Secretary General of AMARC (listen here in French), and Carlos Rivadeneyra, Professor at the University of Lima (listen here in Spanish).

For more information about World Radio Day 2016, visit the official webpage here.   

You can listen to how Radio saves lives in times of emergency and disaster by tuning in to on Saturday 13 February.

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