Community radio in Kenya trained in gender mainstreaming and content development
Sixteen staff members from Radio Sauti FM came together from 14 to 16 November 2012 in Asembo Bay, Kenya for a training workshop, as part of the UNESCO project “Empowering local radios with ICTs”. The training, which took into account the results of a baseline survey on the quality of the radio station’s programmes, engaged volunteers in a first series of trainings on radio programming and gender. Participants were introduced to gender mainstreaming, monitoring and basic concepts associated with audience research.
Hands-on training was also provided in content development. Exercises included skills development in interviewing, handling recorders, recording techniques and sound editing. The trainers also discussed strategies that could ensure the radio’s technical durability, media ethics and codes of conduct.
Speaking at the beginning of the workshop, the station manager, Mr.Fredrick Mariwa, said that the training would take a participative approach.
“We have all attended training workshops at one point in life,” said Mr Mariwa. “This one is going to be different and unique in the sense that more than three quarters of the training period is going to be dominated by practical applications followed by presentations and critiquing.”
Radio Sauti’s Chairman, Mr Peter Kochiel, said in a keynote address that the UNESCO project would allow the radio to ensure that the quality of its programming is improved and maintained both during and after the project period.
Participants of the workshop lauded the gender training. One participant, Mr Haron Otieno, added that the voice analysis and interviewing techniques taught in the workshop would be valuable for his professional career.
Workshop participants called on the organizers to conduct more training sessions in the future with practical information in various topics that will benefit the correspondents, the radio and the entire community.
The training at Radio Sauti was part of an ongoing series of capacity building initiatives undertaken through the project “Empowering local radios with ICTs”, which is financed by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA). In Kenya, UNESCO focuses on Radio Sauti FM, Radio Mangelete, Mugambo Jwetu FM and Mwanedu FM.
Another round of workshops is due next year for Sauti FM on the art of news-making, managing the news desk and correspondents, and ICT and radio.