In August 2017 large parts of Bihar were flooded along with other parts of North India, Nepal and Bangladesh. First Response Radio (FRR) India responded with dedicated radio programmes providing vital relief information, psychosocial support and opportunities for affected communities to communicate with authorities and each other.
Bihar Case Study
When people were in chaos, FRR India programmes provided a local presence with reliable and timely information, which facilitated a return to stability. The programmes helped bridge between government organisations, NGOs and the affected communities. On-the-ground teams and helplines to trauma counselling provided listening ears so that communication was truly local and truly two-way.
Reaching out to disaster hit Pacific communities via radio
First Response Radio, or FRR, is a network of radio broadcasters, NGOs and government partners whose goal is to set up temporary radio stations for communities affected by major disasters.
FRR works mainly in Asia but is keen to develop partnerships in the Pacific region.
The international co-ordinator of FRR, Mike Adams, told Moera Tuilaepa Taylor when it all started.
In October 2017 FRR trainers Mike Adams and Alan Fotheringham were in Kathmandu, Nepal to do 'radio in disaster' training with Radio Nepal. Working in partnership with BBC Media Action – Nepal, FRR was helping to strengthen their resilience through four practical days of class work and a one day field trial with the Suitcase Radio equipment.
After 5 days in the classroom FRR training moved onto 3 days in the field. The new team broke the world's record and set up the full FM radio station and started broadcasting in 16 minutes! The Field Trial continues in Pidie Jaya, the location of Aceh's December 2016 earthquake that affected more than 80,000 people.
FRR Philippines (FRR PH) ran a full Rapid Response training class from December 7-16 in Manila, Philippines. The 5 day class was topped off with an a adventurous 3 day field exercise. Due to an impending typhoon alert that stopped all boat traffic, the team was not able to reach their targeted field trial location, Santa Fe, Cebu. So they improvised and set up the emergency radio station right where they were in Antipolo, Medillan. After 2 days of broadcasting they were able to arrive at Santa Fe for the final day. This team also broke the WORLD RECORD for the fastest setup and on air time, with a time of 21 minutes.