The 7.8 magnitude earthquake that hit Nepal 25 April 2015 affected numerous radio stations in the 14 districts hit by the disaster. But despite lost equipment, destroyed buildings, chaos and personal tragedies, many radio stations managed to get back on air in a matter of hours or days.
Nepal earthquake silences over 20 community radios
These radio stations became crucial channels for the dissemination of vital information to the local communities. Authorities and people relied almost entirely on the stations for conveying and receiving information about the situation, including what to do and not to do and where to go for aid, food and medicine.
Immediately after the earthquake, IMS supported a rapid assessment of the most urgent needs of the stations, thus ensuring that at least one radio was operational in each district. Initial assistance later led to a project aimed at addressing key issues of governance and accountability in disaster-affected areas.
A series of workshops brought together journalists from ten stations who were trained in order to produce the program Jamani in cooperation with Ujyaalo FM, a private radio network based in Kathmandu. Jamani is broadcast three times a week and covers issues related to earthquake and post-quake recovery. Impact of the program is real and substantial, with numerous examples of changes or advances at the local level.