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Milestone for station

Torika Tokalau
Saturday, May 03, 2014

FIJI's first women-led community radio station FemLINKPACIFIC launched its 10th year anniversary campaign of FemTALK 89FM on Thursday.

The milestone was celebrated by the women who helped build the radio station from its beginning until today.

"We started with one mobile suitcase radio and in November 2011, we launched two more community radio stations," FemLINKPACIFIC executive director Sharon Bhagwan-Rolls said.

"We started with eight hours per month and now we produce 60 hours a week in Suva and 20 hours a week in Labasa. In 2013, we produced 1645 broadcast hours."

Ms Bhagwan-Rolls said from a small team of student volunteers from St Joseph's Secondary School and through the Generation Next project, they were now a team of more than 150 young women who were equipped to produce and broadcast radio programs.

She said the journey had not been without its challenges.

"Ten years on the value of community radio within the development sectors is still not properly understood as key component of the multi-dimensional approach to not only development-based communications but also as a peacebuilding tool."

The 10th year anniversary campaign — Communicating peace, development, diversity, security and freedom — will, according to Ms Bhagwan-Rolls, connect well with the theme for World Press Freedom Day 2014 that is commemorated worldwide today.

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