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Program Information
 TUC Radio 
 In celebration of World Radio Day and Black History Month 2016
 Weekly Program
 Maria Gilardin  
 No Advisories - program content screened and verified.
This is a rebroadcast of an interview with Brenda Leonard, one of the founders of Bush Radio. When I met her in May 2009 in San Francisco she was on a US tour of community stations and gave presentations about the iconic, now world famous radio station that came out of the resistance movement against Apartheid.

Denied a license under the old Apartheid regime, Bush Radio went on the air illegally in 1993. Two broadcasters were arrested and the equipment confiscated. After the historic elections of 1994 the first broadcast licenses issued by the Mandela government were specifically for community broadcasters. In August 1995 Bush Radio began licensed broadcasts.

For this broadcast I asked Brenda, who is now manager of Bush Radio, for an update and she wrote: Currently South Africa has over 250 community radio stations reaching over 9.2 million listeners each day." (Which means over 170 stations have been added since 2009.) Bush Radio is still a model for community radio and continues to train much of the staff at the new stations.

They are always looking for innovative ways of engaging their listeners and marginalized groups. Controversial issues are discussed in town halls and the debate is aired live on the air, with audience participation both in the town hall and through sms, Facebook and phone calls.

In this interview Brenda addresses childcare at the station, and children as young a 6 years learning how to broadcast and engineer. She also gives several examples of how the station engages in issues of the day: fighting graffiti bans, or educating students during a 3 months teacher strike.

The Bush radio news department is famous and respected and graduates of the training can easily find jobs at other stations. Since before 2009 the news room has included electronic media such as video and photos, blogs and SMS as well as remote broadcasting. She also talks about international intern programs, and cooperation with journalism departments.

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00:29:30 English 2009-05-30
 San Francsico, CA
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