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Rezaul Karim Chowdhury, Chairperson of Board of Trustees of Bangladesh NGOs Network for Radio and Communication (BNNRC) has received the UN WSIS Prizes 2017 Champion

Community Radio related two Initiatives of Bangladesh NGOs Network for Radio and Communication (BNNRC) has recognized as Champions in UN World Summit on the Information Society (UN WSIS) Prizes 2017.

Mr. Rezaul Karim Chowdhury, Chairperson of Board of Trustees of Bangladesh NGOs Network for Radio and Communication (BNNRC) has received the UN WSIS Prizes 2017 Champion from Mr. Houlin Zhao, Secretary-General of UN International Telecommunication Union (ITU) on Tuesday 13 June 2017 at a ceremony at Geneva International Conference Centre, Switzerland as part of the annual UN WSIS Forum.

International Telecommunication Union (ITU) announced 90 Champions of the prestigious World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) Prizes contest while the 18 Winners, out of these 90 Champions, has recognized at a ceremony at Geneva International Conference Centre(GICC).

The champions projects are: Community Broadcasting Library (CBL) for Access to Information and Knowledge in Bangladesh, Project is supported by Free Press Unlimited & European Union. & English Language through Community Radio in Rural Bangladesh, Project Supported by American Centre, Dhaka, Bangladesh

UN WSIS Prizes honor outstanding projects that leverage the power of information and communication technology (ICT) to accelerate socio-economic development. Besides the highlighted relevance of the project to the respective WSIS Action Line as referenced in the Geneva Plan of Action, the selection process was based on the project's impact on the community and linkages with the Sustainable Development.

345 ICT success stories from around the world were nominated for the Online Voting Phase (30 March – 30 April) following a comprehensive review by the Expert Group of 467 submitted projects submitted by the UN WSIS Stakeholder community. Based on the results of the intensive Online Voting Phase, which saw over 1.1 million votes cast by WSIS stakeholders, a selection of winning projects was made by the Expert Group.

The eighteen winners will go on to win WSIS Prizes 2017 and will be presented with an award at the WSIS Prizes ceremony during the WSIS Forum 2017, 12-16 June 2017 in Geneva, Switzerland. At the same occasion, 72 WSIS Prize 2017 Champions (first four runner-up projects in each category) has recognized during the special ceremony dedicated to their success and will receive special certificates of achievement.

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Community Radio received 7 out of 12 prizes in Radio Category of UNICEF Meena Media Award 2016. Five Community radio stations in rural Bangladesh received 7 awards in radio category in Meena Media Award-2016 for their outstanding contribution in innovation in media and protection of child rights in the year 2015.

As in every year, UNICEF Bangladesh has organized this competition to encourage the journalists and broadcasters to highlight the child rights issues in media. A total of 48 media professionals have been honored for their outstanding contribution in championing the rights of the children.

This year, the 12th Meena Media Award has been announced on 09 October 2016 at Pan Pacific Sonargaon Hotel. Hon’ble Minister for Ministry of Information H E Mr. Hasanul Haq Inu, MP and Mr. Dzidula Masiku on behalf of UNICEF Bangladesh handed over the crest, award money and certificate to the winners.

Bangladesh NGOs Network for Radio and Communication (BNNRC) actively works to improve recognition of the community electronic media sector [Community Radio | Community TV | Community Film] & its work in and involvement with the communities it seeks to serve from
2000 with support from Free Press Unlimited(FPU).

The first, second and third award recipients of each category and age-groups received BDT 50,000(US $ 600), BDT 25,000(US$300) and BDT 15,000 (USid="mce_marker"90) in cash prizes respectively in addition to a crest. The five community radio stations received BDT 1,60,000 (US$ 1952 ) in cash altogether.

The winning stations are: Community Radio Pollikontha 99.2, Community Radio Borendra 99.2, Community Radio Bikrampur 99.2, and Community Radio Jhenuk 99.2 FM and Community Radio Chilmari.

Responding to the call of UNICEF-Bangladesh earlier Community radio stations of the country participated and submitted their radio programs in the competition under two categories –below and above 18 years of age. These programs reflected important issues like child education, present situation of female child and the children from horijon/dalites community, child marriage/early marriage, evolution of children organizations, child marriage in Dalit community, suicide of children, negligence of girl child in the community, life-threatening livelihood of child labors, drug addiction and its effects on family and society.

Out of these submissions, 07 have received the final award.

Dividing into “Creative” and “Reporting” categories within 02 age groups below and above 18 years, entries have been sought from print, online, television and radio under specific age groups.

The final awardees are as follows:

Innovation and creative category (below 18 years): 1st prize: Md. Kamaruzzaman, Community Radio Pollikontha 99.2. Second Prize: Sharan Majumda, Community Radio Borendra 99.2,Third Prize: Sumi Akter, Community Radio Bikrampur 99.2.They received all three top awards by contesting government, private and international broadcasters.

Innovation and creative category (above 18 years): 3rd prize: Sutapa Rani Pal, Community Radio Pollikontha 99.2 fm. The contestants from Government broadcasting- Bangladesh Betar and Private FM ABC Radio received the 1st and 2nd prize respectively in this category.

News Report/Investigative Reporting category (below 18 years): 1st and 2nd prize: Shajedul Islam and Tajmin Rashid Taj from Community Radio Jhenuk 99.2. The third winner was one contestant from private FM Asian Radio.

News Report/Investigative Reporting category (above 18 years) : 3rd prize: Polash Mahmud from Community Radio Chilmari 99.2 fm. The 1st and second prize were won by the participants from Radio Today and International broadcaster BBC Bangla.

The award nominees were selected by a panel of judges through a competitive process from print, on-line and broadcast media. Broadly divided into “Creative” and “Journalistic” categories, entries have been sought from print, online, television and radio under specific age groups.

An eleven member expert panel of judges comprising of creative writers, veteran media professionals, and academics assessed each entry which included – Selina Hossain, Shahnoor Wahid, Robaet Ferdous, Fahmidul Haque, Zakir Hossain Raju, Qadir Kollol, Ratan Paul, Mithila Farzana, Rafiqur Rahman, Jannatul Mawa and Abu Naser Siddique.

For selection in Radio category, the judges were Qadir Kallol (BBC), Ratan Paul(Dhani Chitra Media Ltd.) and Mithila Farzana (Ekattar TV).

It can be mentioned that four community radio stations in the country received 13 awards in radio category in Meena Media Award -2015 for their contribution to innovation in media and protection of child rights in the year 2014.

BNNRC has been encouraging and mobilize the stations and facilitating them for submission of their programs in the Meena Media Award. Now 17 Community Radio Stations are on-air in the country, aiming to ensure empowerment and right to information for the rural community. They are broadcasting altogether 135 hours program per day on information, education, local entertainment and development motivation activities. Around 1000 Youth Women & Youth are now working with those stations throughout the country as rural broadcasters within 6.18 million rural people in 115 upazillas under 29 districts.
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Community Radio mainstreaming the marginalized, Information Minister Hasanul Haq Inu, MP

Infromation Minister Hasanul Haq Inu, MP, today said community radio could play significant role to continue the trend of government’s development and ensure health, education, agriculture and free flow of information for the rural people in line with mainstreaming marginalized of voices for the voiceless.
The government has taken decision to set up community radio at the initiative of the private organization across the country to bring the marginalized people at the mainstream of the development and to lead the nation towards desired upliftment, the minister said. Information minister Hasanul Haq Inu came up with the comments while addressing an inaugural ceremony of 17th Community Radio Sarabela 98.8 FM at SKS inn, an outskirt of the town here on Tuesday morning around 10 am as the chief guest.
Deputy Commissioner M. Abdus Samad, superintendent of police M. Ashraful Islam, director of Palli Karma Sahayak Foundation Dr. Taposh Kumar, and chief executive officer of Bangladesh NGOs Network for Radio and Communications AHM Bazlur Rahman were present as the special guests while chief executive of SKS Foundation Rasel Ahmed Liton presided over the function.
The community radio Sarabela would also uphold the native culture and tradition to all side by side with giving entertainment to all section of the people and empowering them, the minister said.
The community radio would say about the hard to reach char dwellers and river erosion victims and their sorrows and it would play to change their living standard through solving their problems, he also said.
The Community Radio Sarabela would also play to create the sentiment against terrorism and militancy and help the government implement the 10 brands declared by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to build a middle income country by 2021 and achieve the sustainable development goal as well.
Earlier, head of programme of SKS Foundation M. Rajab Ali made a welcome speech in the function. Later, the artistes of the Radio Sarabela performed songs in the function.
A large number of people including district level officials, public representatives, political leaders and NGO representative including journalists took part in the function.
Presently, 16 community radio stations are on-air and they are broadcasting 125 hours programs per day. A total of nearly 1000 young youth and youth women are involved as broadcasters in those stations. Community radio stations are going to be popular in our country; it’s approximate audience number is 5.6 million.
Potentials of Community Radio in Bangladesh are Community Radio has created scope for the poor and marginalized community to raise their own voice; it becomes the voice for the voiceless. This neo-media outlet opened scope to establish their rights to Information and communication in social, political, cultural and environmental arena, Scope widened for poverty reduction and sustainable development because of the rights to raise voice of the community and accessibility to knowledge and information, Scope opened for exchange of dialogue between local elected representatives, govt. and NGO professionals for the sake of establishing good governance, Direct linkage established between the community and the main sectors reflected in SDGs and 7th 5-year plan, Scope created for Social debate, inclusion and preservation of cultural diversity by ensuring the inclusion of the marginalized community and Community Radio is now able to play more active role in Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) due to establishment of effective linkage between the govt. departments and local/rural community.
Community Radio Sarabela 98.8 is supported by Embassy of Japan and Palli Karma-Sahayak Foundation (PKSF). Palli Karma-Sahayak Foundation (PKSF), an apex development organization, was established by the Government of Bangladesh (GoB) for sustainable poverty reduction through employment generation.
Bangladesh NGOs Network for Radio and Communication is promoting the advocacy with the government in relations to community radio with other organizations since its emergence from 2000. BNNRC has been addressing the community radio and community TV access issue for over a decade, helping to bridge the information gap of rural Bangladesh with the support from Free Press Unlimited.


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Sustainability Strategy For Community Radio

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Sustainability Strategy for Community Radio
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