World Radio Day and South Africa’s first high school radio station


Feb 13 is World Radio Day, a day set aside ‘to raise greater awareness among the public and the media of the importance of radio; to encourage decision makers to establish and provide access to information through radio; as well as to enhance networking and international cooperation among broadcasters.’

Ahead of the day, a high school in Khayelitsha has been speaking about the launch its own radio station with a team of 11 youth reporters who have been developing their skills in the areas of research, interviewing and content production.

But if you’re reading this thinking, ‘so far, so ordinary’ for High School radio, think again.

This is a place where almost half of the population live in shacks.

Where the average ANNUAL household income is just 14,600 Rands (£633.48).

Against that backdrop these young people, calling themselves the Optimistic Youth Reporters started work two and a half years ago with the Children’s Radio Foundation (CRF) at the public high school Centre of Science and Technology (COSAT).

Principal at COSAT, Mrs Phadiela Cooper said the students had grown in confience: “It has just been such a wonderful eye opener for me, to see how these kids have grown.”

CRF executive director Mike Rahfaldt, said: “High school radio gets young people speaking about the issues that affect them, and reflects their own experiences and those of their communities. We are hoping that COSAT will be the first of many high school radio schools across South Africa to launch their own station.”

* Find out more about the initiative and hear examples of the students’ work by clicking on the links in the interactive image above.

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