Monday 15th February 2016, SOAS University, London
From a radio studio in a suitcase, to a panel reflecting on ‘what radio can do for peacebuilding’, our World Radio Day event was a fantastic celebration. Co-hosted by SOAS Radio, we had a busy exhibition of C4D and radio practitioners. First Response Radio and InsightShare gave hands-on equipment demonstrations, 42 Strings provided live music, and many other organisations talked to visitors about their work — FEBA Radio, Prison Radio Association, Children’s Radio Foundation, RadioActive, Radio Souriat — Syrian Women’s Radio for Peace, InsightShare, London International Development Center and SciDev. Visitors ranged from development practitioners, to students, to local Londoners
SOAS Radio broadcast the whole event live, interviewing attendees along the way — you can listen here! Meanwhile, our C4D Network stand was also popular, and we were delighted to sign up and welcome a number of new members to the network.
The evening panel of lively debate around radio, risk and real change — featuring Kerida McDonald (UNICEF C4D), Anne Bennett (Hirondelle Foundation), Francis Rolt (Radio for Peacebuilding). Anne gave insight into an organisation that has worked with radio across a global range of settings — a particularly memorable experience being the translation of Shakespeare’s Julius Ceasar into creole for a radio drama that immediately gathered an avid listenership demanding more episodes. The topic question of the panel was inverted by Francis: «It’s not ‘what radio can do for peacebuilding’, but ‘what peacebuilding can do for radio’. Radio is vital for peacebuilding». The audience picked up on this claim of the fundamental importance of communication, asking questions on issues of security and the demands of corporate funding and advertising. Kerida illustrated radio for peacebuilding through two pertinent case studies of UNICEF’s work, and closed the evening’s proceedings with a rousing quote from Haile Selassie — and Bob Marley: there will never be peace ‘until the colour of a man’s skin is of no more significance than the colour of his eyes’.
[Image credits: Scarlett Crawford Photography]