South Kivu Women’s Media Association

South Kivu Women’s Media Association

For the past ten years, if the women journalists of the Association des Femmes de Médias du Sud Kivu wanted to broadcast one of their stories on the lives of women in South Kivu’s rural areas, they had to record them, drive them to the capital Bukavu where they would be edited, and then pay local radio stations to air them.

This will change with the launch of AFEM’s brand new station “Mama Radio” in partnership with ECI. With the help of a $32,000 investment, the recording studio at AFEM’s Bukavu headquarters was built over four months and opened in January 2016.   

An independent voice in Congo’s media landscape, AFEM was created in 2003 by five women journalists and counts today 72 members. AFEM trains women journalists, sets up local media associations, and educates rural communities on gender issues.

15 journalists in North and South Kivu have received training in time for the launch of the ambitious programming of “Mama Radio.” 

With the launch of “Mama Radio,” people in the region can now tune to 12 weekly shows in Swahili and French on issues including democracy, human rights, good governance, women’s access to resources, reproductive health, and gender. 

The programs also have a specific focus on news in the rural areas of South and North Kivu where people get together in “radio clubs” to listen to the broadcasts.

“With our own radio station, we will give women their due space to express themselves,” said AFEM’s national coordinator, Julienne Baseke. “One of our dreams is becoming reality right – introducing gender equality to journalism.” 

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