Sudan (MNN) — Words of Hope is
preparing to expand its radio broadcasts in Sudan. Its Spirit FM station has been broadcasting
from Yei since September 2008, covering an area near the Uganda border. It wants to do more FM broadcasting
in place of shortwave.
"For many years the only real way
of reaching that vast country, with so many challenges insofar as
infrastructure development, was through shortwave," explained Lee DeYoung, Words
of Hope's Vice President for Broadcasting.
Spirit FM broadcasts in five different
languages: Dinka, Nuer, Bari, Arabic,
and English. It hopes to expand its
programming to other local FM stations.
inside Sudan, we are exploring relationships with other FM stations," DeYoung said. "We want to begin, as we have already
done in other places…to use a greater amount of local FM station broadcasting
in addition to, and perhaps eventually in place of, the shortwave."
The opportunities could extend
the success that Words of Hope has already enjoyed in the region. Its shortwave Gospel broadcasts in the Dinka and
Nuer languages are already among the most listened-to radio programs.
In addition, radio broadcasting
is a powerful influence in this part of Sudan. People rely on the radio for their information.
"We're encouraged that audience
research in the past two years has indicated that, in some parts of Sudan, the
shortwave broadcasts are the most listened-to communications media of any that
were surveyed, having a much bigger presence over newspapers, or television, or
satellite, or internet," DeYoung explained. "Radio is really the primary medium for many in south Sudan and
throughout much of Africa."
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