Tag Archives: natural disaster

Five Community Radio Started Flood Broadcasting in Northern Part of Bangladesh

Millions of people affected by flood in Northern part of Bangladesh

Due to the ongoing terrible flood, millions of people in northern part of Bangladesh fall in an adverse situation. Flood protection embankments flash away daily, new areas down, destroying crops and the sufferings of the people with their livestock reaches in an extreme misery condition in line with the flood situation worsened further as the onrush of water from upstream was continuing, affecting around six lakh people in 20 districts, said Flood Forecasting and Warning Centre (FFWC) of Ministry of Disaster Management and Relief (MoDMR), Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh.

Five community radio stations have started flood Broadcasting in Northern Part of Bangladesh with the community people in a special disaster risk reduction focus. The Community Radio stations are; Community Radio Chilmari, Chilmari of Kurigram, Community Radio Sarabela of Gaibandha, Community Radio Mukti of Bogura, Community Radio Borendra of Naogaon and Community Radio Pollikontho of Moulvibazar in line with the Standing Orders on Disaster (SOD) of Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh.

The people of the riverside areas are passing days in panic-stricken uncertainty. People are facing scarcity of food and shelters. Road communication totally collapsed- as per the expert’s opinion “the effects of the flood seem to be more extreme than the 1998 situation”. Related government authorities ensured that they have taken possibly all preparation.

In the meanwhile, the community radio stations have broadcasted 23 hours programs related to the deadly flood situation. The programs were produced in the format of special bulletins, magazine programs, spot reports, interview and public service announcement.

The contents of the programs are on flood forecasting, precautionary measures for facing flood, ongoing flood situations, report on the affected areas, post flood situation and measures, and the role of the community people to protect and reduce the loss of lives and resources etc. In addition, the programs narrated- how to protect the children, women, pregnant mothers, older citizens, live-stocks and household stuff.

A total of 41 community broadcasters of 16 youth women and 25 youths have been continuously working in different community radio stations. It is to be noted that the broadcasters have obtained the Disaster Risk Reduction training from Bangladesh NGOs Network for Radio and Communication (BNNRC). The broadcasters are working closely with the local government authority.

The five community radio stations maintained full-time liaison with the disaster monitoring cells at district and Upazila administration. They also kept contact and collected updated information from the NGOs volunteers who were working hard with the disaster-prone community. Till to date, they have participated in 8 coordination meetings organized by the local government. They are getting updates, guidelines and aware about measures to be taken. Community radio stations are keeping a continuous connection with the district, upazilas and union Disaster Management Committees and the encouraging the communities with information for facing the deadly situation.

Community radios are broadcasting the interview of Upazila Nirbahi Officer, Chairman, Upazila and Union Parishad, District Relief and Rehabilitation Officer, Upazila Health Officer, Upazila Agriculture Officer, Upazila Education Officer, representatives of Disaster Management Committee and the victims and community people as well.

According to the Community Radio Stations- the villages goes under water in a sudden and road communication totally collapsed so food, safe drinking water, shelter and veterinary feed stock become in immeasurable condition. Besides, transportation, sanitation, and schooling situation are extreme too.

In post flood situation, child diseases, food supply, rehabilitation work, seed and seedling, Vet-feed, employment and maintenance of road communication will be the prior initiatives to settle up. Community broadcasters expect that government along with NGOs and other CBOs will take necessary steps jointly to make the community life easy. Community Radio broadcasters believe that “Together Everyone Achieves More” and the means to solve problems in stages.

BNNRC) is maintaining full-time contact and coordination with the five community radio stations. The contact points for the community radio stations are;

Mr. Boshiur Uddin, Station Manager, Radio Chilmari, Kurigram. phone: 88 01719 46 49 81. E-mail: boshir.radiochilmari@gmail.com

Mr. Mahfujul Haque, Station Manager, Radio Sarabela, Gaibandha. phone: 88 0173007 25 25. E-mail: mahfujfaruque86@gmail.com

Mr. Ariful Islam Chowdhury, Station Manager, Radio Mukti, Bogra. phone: 88 01735 9331 56. E-mail: acrm156@gmail.com

Mr. Shubrata Sarkar, Station Manager, Borendro Radio, Naogaon. phone: 88 01712 9240 62. E-mail: shubratasarkar10@gmail.com

Mr. Mehadi Hasan, Sr, Station Manager, Radio Pollikontho, Moulvibazar. phone: 88 0171198 5510. E-mail: mehedi.mh@brac.net

Mr. Kamaruzzaman, Disaster Control Room In-charge of Bangladesh NGOs Network for Radio and Communication (BNNRC), Dhaka Phone: 8801711131211 E-Mail: pc@bnnrc.net

It can be mentioned that BNNRC has supported the radio stations during the times of cyclone Mahasen , Komen, Roanu and Mora in the coastal part of Bangladesh thus helped to save the lives and assets of millions of the coastal region. BNNRC kept constant coordination with five Community Radio stations and provided information and guidance in the whole process.

Ministry of Disaster Management and Relief(MoDMR) has already created Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system Disaster Early Warning System Saving Lives & Livelihood and Emergency Alerts and Warnings through dedicated phone number 10941. Mass People Can Dial 10941 for Emergency Alerts and Warnings.

The Ministry has piloted the use of mobile technology involving Interactive Voice Response (IVR) to disseminate weather advisory and disaster early warning alerts to the population at-risk areas. Operating under MoDMR this facility provides the general public 24/7 access to receive updated pre-recorded multi-hazard early warning messages that are generated from Flood Forecasting and Warning Centre (FFWC) and Bangladesh Meteorological Department (BMD), Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh.

Source: BNNRC

Community Radio Stations in Coastal Bangladesh in addressing Cyclone ROANU in Disaster Risk Reduction

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Eight community radio (CR) stations in the coastal region of Bangladesh broadcast a combined total of 348 hours of programs for 3 continuous days from May 19 to May 21, 2016 as they addressed Cyclone Roanu in the region.

The community radio stations broadcast on a 24-hours basis in order to keep communities alert during and after Cyclone Ronau hit the coastal belt of the country. In order to broadcast around the clock, their previous air-time was increased in line with the “Standing Orders on Disaster (SOD) of the Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh.” These eight community radio stations, all of which are situated in the coastal region, played a big role in saving people’s lives and assets.

Following the cyclone warning signals the stations started broadcasting from 19 May afternoon and continued non-stop till midnight of 21 May. Out of the total 348 hours, 187 hours were information specific to the cyclone itself, the disaster unfolding, the after-effects of the cyclone and what should be done for the community.

The stations collected updated information from the Meteorological Department, the disaster cells and local control room set up by the District and Upazila administrative authority and maintaining full-time liaison with theses groups. As there was no electricity in the area, due to power failure/load shedding, the stations, which were the only source of information, depended fully on the generators and kept the broadcasting services uninterrupted. In addition, the community radio stations also kept contact and collected updated information from the Red Cresent volunteers and the scouts who were working hard with the disaster-prone communities.

Along with broadcasting messages and PSAs received from the local government authority, they also broadcast their own programs which they have learned and produced through training and their experiences from previous disasters. With broadcasting of weather news bulletin after every 10-15 minutes, they also broadcast magazine programs, dramas, features, interviews and talk shows of the responsible persons involved in disaster management in the area. As an offline support group, the members of the radio listeners clubs also took part in the process of fulfilling the objective of the station. They conducted house-to-house visits of the listeners and disseminated information about the latest situation of the cyclone, their contact points during an emergency and what types of services were available for them during rescue or rehabilitation of the communities. At the same time, they also supplied information to the radio stations and kept them updated about the community situation.

The eight radio stations are Community Radio Nalta 99.2 ( Kaligonj, Satkhira), Community Radio Sundarban 98.8 ((Koyra, Khulna), Community Lokobetar 99.2  (Barguna Sadar), Community Rural Radio Krishi Radio 98.8 (Amtoli, Barguna), Community Radio Naf 99.2 (Teknaf, Cox’s Bazar), Community Radio Sagargiri 99.2 (Sitakunda, Chittagong), Community Radio Meghna 99.00  (Charfasion, Bhola) and Community  Radio Sagardwip 99.2 (Hatiya, Noakhali).

A total of 116 community broadcasters (37 females and 79 males), volunteers and members from 175 listeners clubs worked throughout the whole period by operating on a shifting basis in order to continue broadcaasting.

It can be mentioned that Bangladesh NGOs Network for Radio and Communication (BNNRC), with support from Free Press Unlimited, supported the radio stations during the times of Cyclones Mahasen and Komen and, thus, also kept constant contact and assisted in coordination with these stations and provided information and guidance throughout the entire process in relation to  Cyclone Roanu.

Source: BNNRC

Towards COP21: Broadcasting the voices of the communities – An international radio series produced by AMARC

COP21 UnitedIn December 2015, Paris will host the 21st Session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework convention on Climate Change (COP21). There, the countries will negotiate a new universal climate agreement.

The global phenomenon of climate change is affecting every country on the planet. But, the poorest regions and the most marginalized communities in the world are hit the hardest by the changing conditions. In the frame of the AMARC Global Campaign Fund, the World Association of Community Radio Broadcasters (AMARC) wishes to highlight how the poorest and most marginalized populations in various regions of the world are touched by climate change, global warming and pollution. This international radio series will focus the political, economical and societal aspects of climate change and will also address disaster prevention and management.

From mid-October to December, AMARC will feature the selected productions on its website and will promote them amongst partner’s channels, networks and on social media in order to improve public education, encourage knowledge sharing and dissemination of scientific information on climate and engage discussion among communities.

What AMARC is looking for?

  • Documentary, reportage, interview, roundtable, storytelling (the format is flexible).
  • The audio production must be at least 10 minutes long and ready for on-air broadcast.
  • Productions in local languages are welcomed (a script is necessary).

Community radio journalists and producers are encouraged to submit a proposal to secretariat@si.amarc.org before October 9, 2015. Please state your name, radio, country and add the details of the subject you wish to discuss in your production.

All selected producers will receive a financial compensation for their work.

This international radio series is supported by Bread for the World.

Source: AMARC