Thanks to Big Ideas @ Berkeley, EK-FM can now “scale-up” its broadcast hours from 5 to 12 hours a day! Out of 186 applicants, our team was chosen to participate in the final round of the “scaling-up” category competition.
EK Youth Radio has 3 goals on the horizon:
(1) Upgrade solar-power and production equipment to double daily broadcasting hours and improve media content.
(2) Initiate a community workshop series to improve dialogue and participation in radio among marginalized populations on Mfangano (particularly women & youth).
(3) Strengthen relationships with regional and global community radio networks and popular education movements.
In the recent months, blog posts from EK-FM Youth Presenters have been featured on Craig Newmark’s (Craig from Craigslist!) blog, craigconnects.org. Each piece explores rural technology, globalization, community radio, and it’s connection to Mfangano Island, Kenya.
I Could Not Press the Computer Keyboard Buttons..
Proud to Be Suba!
The Future of EK Radio
Local-Global Youth Development
This week, Organic Health Response started the construction of the new Ekialo Kiona Emergency Boat! Local Abasuba boat builders will carefully construct this custom design boat using generations worth of local expertise.
This process will be broken into three phases:
- Fundi Phase (local builders): Build boat hull and cross beams
- Carpenter Phase: Install custom boat flooring and seats
- Finishing Phase: Painting and outfitting of canopy
The new EK Emergency Boat is set to sail by July 1, 2014. In the meantime, stay posted and watch our video to learn about the boat building process and emergency needs on Mfangano.
Watch our new video highlighting OHR and Microclinic International (MCI)’s microclinic program, the Mfangano Health Net (MHN)- Microclinic Program. This is the world’s first microclinic program for people living with HIV/AIDS.
A big thanks to Cailley Frank-Lehrer for creating this video!
Recently, EK Radio Presenters have been writing a blog series for Craigconnects.org. This week, EK’s “Naz” writes about her experience as a young Suba woman on Mfangano Island. She reflects back to her first time in the EK computer lab and highlights how such technologies as computers and radio can connect Suba youth to our global world. In her words, “…it gives me more reason to be Suba!”
East African Magazine Highlights EK Radio’s Come-back for the Olusuba Language
“All over the world, indigenous communities are being assimilated into more populous neighbours, and oral traditions are fading with the passing of each generation. One of these East African communities is the Suba — a Bantu-speaking community on the Kenyan side of Lake Victoria, which over the years has been heavily influenced by the predominant group in the region — the Luo. So much so that the Suba language, Olusuba, is listed among Africa’s 300 languages consigned to extinction by the Unesco Atlas of the World’s Languages in Danger of Disappearing…” “There are those, however, who are helping to preserve Olusuba — chief among which is a radio station in a small community centre on the island’s southern shore.”
Read the entire article here.
To learn more about the Ekialo Kiona Youth Radio Initiative by visiting our webpage.
Our scholar family is growing! Welcome 2014 EK scholars.
2013 and 2014 EK Scholars
Saturday 4th January was a very big day for Organic Health Response and the Ekialo Kiona Center. Parents and scholars were overjoyed and could not believe that their sons/daughters had qualified to be among the few lucky ones to be supported through the EK Scholarship program.
One student, Calvin, was flanked by his mother and grandfather. The old man could not believe such a noble program existed in Mfangano Island. He declared in the Suba Language,
“It’s my first time to be here at Ekialo Kiona. I have heard so much about this center, but today, I have walked to this place [over 25 kimometres] to witness the wonderful development programs they have brought in this community. I can’t believe it, may God grant you wisdom and long life to continue supporting this community.”
The five newly enrolled scholars got the opportunity to meet the four old students who were enrolled in the program from 2013. Our family of scholars grew from four to nine. We feel that this is a remarkable increase in just two years of this program’s development.
OHR volunteer, Mae Hanzlik, spent the summer on Mfangano as part of the Nourish group at the University of Minnesota. Mae talks about her experience this summer in a recent blog post.
Here’s a tidbit from her post:
“So, how’d you spend your summer?”
Those six words unleash a rush of emotion, passion and nostalgia for me after I spent this past summer on a little island in Kenya. Mfangano is an mountainous island on Lake Victoria. It is an island where there is limited electricity and only one dirt road that connects the small villages. Transportation is by foot, boat, bicycle or motorcycle. The citizens of the island live in basic mud homes with no running water. Additionally, the HIV/AIDS infection rate on the island is estimated to be over 30%, which is due to the culture of poverty where fish is traded for sex.
Read the full post here.
Also take a moment to view a short video explaining the project, here.
Highspeed Internet access is provided freely at the EK Center with the condition that all Internet users must check their HIV status every 6 months. The “Free WIFI for Mfangano” vision has been partly funded by the Craigslist Charitable Fund. Craig Newmark of Craigslist recently posted about the Organic Health Response on the Huffington Post Blog. Craig says, “This is real important stuff, and can help a lot of people out. More to come. I’d like to say that the sun never sets on the Nerdish Empire…” Check out the post here.