Park Advertising is helping community stations get back on air after four broadcasters were destroyed during the recent unrest. Alex FM in Alexandra, MAMS Radio in Mamelodi, West Side FM in Kagiso and Intokozo FM in Durban all suffered catastrophic losses.
Park Advertising’s group MD, Chris Botha, said community radio stations were one of the most essential media cogs in South Africa. ““Communities have been torn apart and community radio has the opportunity and ability to bring people together and develop positive narratives. Without community radio, we start to lose the fabric of community,” he added.
Park Advertising, which encompasses media agencies The MediaShop and Meta Media, Tirisano Consulting and most recently Lucid Media, has helped three stations – Intokozo FM, MAMS FM, and Westside FM – by buying essential studio equipment and transmitters to enable them to get back on air.
“While we’re pleased to be in a position to assist, we would like to challenge every business and individual in South Africa to support affected communities as a priority because we need to rebuild our faith in each other as much as we need to rebuild our country,” Botha said.
Dashni Vilakazi, managing director at The MediaShop Johannesburg and Kagiso Musi, managing director at Meta Media, agree.
“South Africans have proved time and time again just how incredible we are in coming together when tragedy strikes,” said Musi. “But we’d like to see more businesses and private citizens get involved. The smallest gestures can make the biggest difference in someone’s life. Be kinder, donate your time where you can or even just clearing out unwanted clothing can change someone’s life for the better.”
Vilakazi added: “South Africa has been through so much in the last 18 months, but the last few weeks have also shown how incredibly quickly we can bounce back, if we work together. Assisting these community radio stations to get back on air has been crucial for our democratic and editorial freedom, but there is still so much more to be done. Let’s show the world our collective mettle by coming together to rebuild South Africa stronger than before.”
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