AMARC works for the promotion of media freedom and communication right
AMARC is, first and foremost a movement of international solidarity to defend and promote the values of community broadcasting and to build an alternative to the old media models.
For AMARC, the broadcast media are a means by which the citizens and ordinary people, women and men, can work to improve their livelihoods, to defend their rights and to participate in political life.
AMARC is a global network:
AMARC plays a leading role in the worldwide community radio (CR) movement for its perception of what community radios should be, for its accumulated expertise, and for the extension of its network of more than 5,000 members in 113 countries. It actively seeks to reinforce the CR movement by removing barriers and establishing conditions for increasing its effectiveness.
AMARC and other stakeholders have contributed strongly to the expansion of scattered CR experiences into a dynamic and diverse global sector of broadcasting that has become an alternative to commercial and state owned media, which often neglect representation of the poor, the marginalized particularly women, sexual minorities, dalits, indigenous people and the socially and politically oppressed.
Community radio in the Asia-Pacific region:
The main challenges for community broadcastingin the Asia-Pacific region are, first of all the lack of appropriate CR legislation accompanied by constant oppression of media, freedom of expression and military threats. There also exist difficulties related to the sustainability of CR, increased by geographic isolation.
In spite of the hindering factors, community broadcasting is deeply rooted in local communities, highlighting the importance of social sustainability as the key aspect of community radios.
Fighting exclusion through CR:
Exclusion is a key social challenge that can be dealt effectively by CR. Exclusion and inequality are societal challenges that need to be tackled specifically in community radio if Sustainable Development Goals are to be achieved.
For example, indigenous people all over the world confront social injustice and discrimination, and are constantly struggling to protect their economic, social and cultural rights. AMARC enables broadcasters to use community radio as an important tool for empowering indigenous peoples’ communities.
Gender and other stereotypes carried by traditional and mainstream media are obstacles to the exercise of rights and empowerment of marginalized communities. Community radios can effectively facilitate inclusion and the recognition of rights.CR can fight exclusion and marginalization by promoting inclusive content, participatory content making process, and access to community broadcasting as a whole.
Promoting ownership and access of CR:
AMARC aims at empowering members of marginalized communities to enable them to access community broadcasting as board members, managers, producers, reporters and technicians through training programs, advocacy centered workshops, promotion of gender policy for community radios, broadcast campaigns, exchange programs exchange of content, and network development.
AMARC aims at sensitizing community radio broadcasters about the rights, concerns and issues of the minority communities and enabling them to produce radio content that is sensitive towards the minorities and promotes their concerns including their rights as citizens, their social dignity and equal opportunity in all respects of nation building.
Promoting Community Radio for Disaster Risk Reduction:
AMARC builds capacity of community radios for producing effective programs to inform and assist community members to deal with natural disasters such as tsunamis, earthquakes, landslides, forest fires, and floods, as well as to deal with the adverse conditions brought about by climate change.
CR has proven to be a unique tool as an early warning system in natural disaster prevention. It contributes significantly towards building resilient communities and facilitates reconstruction and rehabilitation in an aftermath.
Network building, policy discussion and advocacy:
Creating a collective space for policy discussion and advocacy (linked to a strategic plan for regional CR development in the Asia-Pacific region) and strengthening of the CR network in to address the challenges of the community broadcasting sector is one of the fundamental goals of AMARC.
Community radio conferences organized by AMARC at the international and regional levels are instruments for evaluating the situation of community radios, re-strategizing, and planning for meeting challenges confronting the community radio sector at national, regional and global levels.
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