A new Somali radio station will begin broadcasting in Small Heath to assist the community in raising its voice. The radio station plans to open its doors this coming Saturday, March 12.
Fathi Mohammed, a father from Stechford, founded ‘Rajoradio,’ which means Hope Radio in Somali. Fathi was inspired to create a forum that would voice the Somali and East African communities’ challenges to raise awareness.
Fathi was a journalist in Somali media before becoming a taxi driver, but after struggling to locate information to support his young daughter, who has epilepsy, he chose to settle down.
Fathi spoke openly about the stigmas around mental health and learning development delays within the Somali community, saying that the radio station will help ‘give them a voice.’
The Rajoradio programmes will be broadcast in 95 per cent Somali on all social media platforms, including Facebook and Youtube, and will address a wide range of issues, including parental awareness, education, youth violence, and mental health.
“Sometimes parents don’t even know their rights when it comes to the education system, so this will be an opportunity to give voice to these issues,” Faisa Shahib, one of the presenters and program manager, told BMA Sources.
“We’re attempting to address the issues that are affecting our community because there is a significant need. So, for example, we’ll look at autism awareness among parents, juvenile violence, education recommendations, and support for our Somali population, as language is a barrier, “she stated.
Faisa felt that when the government put new guidance on coronavirus at the start of the pandemic, many members of the Somali community did not grasp it due to language barriers.
The radio station will invite members of the Somali community to the station, but it will also cover issues affecting the East African community living in Birmingham.
She said,” “We want to reach out to our community’s youth, elderly, and professionals and encourage them to give back. Our community has been labelled with stereotypes for years, and we want to empower them to speak up and use their voices.”