Audio postcard: Solar-powered radio in Solenzo


This is Emma Bider, intern with Farm Radio International, once again speaking to you from Burkina Faso.

I’ve been fortunate enough to do a lot of travelling during my time here and I’ve been to some pretty isolated places.

Solenzo, for example, is a small town in the northwest, where one of Farm Radio’s partners is based. It has daily power outages from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. and from 11:30 at night to noon the following day.

This makes it very difficult for the radio to stay connected with its audience and it also means that listeners can miss out on valuable information and programming.

Luckily in Solenzo a solution was found thanks to solar panels.

Radio Lotamu in Solenzo is connected to a solar panel that allows them to have electricity 24 hours a day.

There are also several listening groups in the surrounding areas that have radios that are also charged using smaller solar panels, ensuring that they can listen to Farm Radio’s campaign on orange-fleshed sweet potato.

Since Burkina Faso has an infinite supply of sunshine, listeners will never need to worry about missing the campaign’s episodes and journalists can work effectively and efficiently throughout the day.

This was Emma Bider, speaking to you from Burkina Faso. Thanks for listening.

About the author  
Emma Bider recently returned to Canada from an internship with Farm Radio International in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, organized through the Centre for Media and Transitional Societies. She is a fourth year student in the Journalism and African Studies programs at Carleton University in Ottawa. She has interned at the CBC bureau in London, UK, and traveled across Europe while on exchange in the Netherlands.

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