I have learned…On Radio Active’s 9th Anniversary

A bit late in the day, as we celebrated our anniversary last month on the 25th June 2016.

Here’s a poem on our 9th anniversary of Radio Active CR 90.4 MHz

I’ve learned
Communities can be territorially bound,
But belong to different communities of interest and multifarious networks
And each community has its own way of doing things and
Everyone has something to contribute and a way of participation
I’ve learned-
That even communities of interest are heterogeneous
There is always extreme variety
Caste, Class, Gender, Language always plays a role, in the vocabulary used
I’ve learned-
Communities of interest don’t necessarily speak about issues concerning them,
But want to have a say in anything around them
I’ve learned-
That communities are not stable entities,
That within communities of interest,
Movement to different networks is constant
And that community is dynamic and fluid
I’ve learned-
That a community is like a kaleidoscope, no single view
will shed light on the total picture.
But every twist will reveal a new representation
I’ve learned-
That to understand community there can never be “them and us”
But “we” as a whole, evolving, moving, changing shifting and never constant
I’ve learned-
That within communities’ power hierarchy, insecurity,
favouritism will always prevail
That people come and go, and one must let go…
I’ve learned –
Having a vision, is a first step,
But laying a foundation to actualizing is the next
I’ve learned –
That participation takes on multiple forms
And it cannot be labelled or boxed in
I’ve learned-
That rhythm of work cannot be standardized
While one can establish a regular and repetitive pattern
To break the monotony,
Reskilling, Retreats and refresher training must be the norm
I’ve learned
That one must go beyond the accepted practice of radio
That all communities are not articulate and
That cannot be termed as inferior or unprofessional
I’ve learned-
That there is no right or wrong way of doing things…
And it is important to discard the for and against views
Take criticisms in stride and don’t be afraid to seek assistance
I’ve learned-
That the radio can grow
I’ve learned-
That it is important to focus on the potential for learning
Experiment, experiment, experiment must be the mantra
And celebrations must be the norm
I have learned that when you run a community radio you will always stay on the learning curve – and never hit a dead end…
A big thank you to all the beautiful people who I have met in this journey…

–  Pinky Chandran

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