Radio Civic: tack­ling the pan­dem­ic with reli­able infor­ma­tion and pos­i­tive atti­tude

The com­mu­ni­ty radios sup­port­ed by the Grass­roots Radio project are keep­ing on arrang­ing ini­tia­tives to help local pop­u­la­tions cop­ing with these uncer­tain times in a vari­ety of ways. Radio Civic – the Roman­ian radio oper­at­ing in the com­mu­ni­ties of Sfan­tu Ghe­o­rghe and Vâr­voru de Jos – has put sev­er­al COVID-19-relat­ed ini­tia­tives in place.

Among the ongo­ing activ­i­ties arranged, there is an infor­ma­tion cam­paign to keep two local com­mu­ni­ties of Sfan­tu Ghe­o­rghe and Vâr­voru de Jos informed with reli­able and offi­cial sources. The local radio has also devot­ed efforts to pro­vide the com­mu­ni­ties with reli­able med­ical advices shared by doc­tors and nurs­es in the “Health Pills” (“masuri de pre­ven­tie”) pro­grams.

More­over, ss the lev­el of neg­a­tive news was rais­ing, Radio Civic attempt­ed to also com­mu­ni­cate pos­i­tive infor­ma­tion as much as pos­si­ble. They there­fore cre­at­ed a new pro­gram, called “Vesti Bune (Good News)”, where an actor vol­un­teered to read these news. The local radio also kept on bring­ing the voic­es of the locals in the pro­grams, so that they could tell their sto­ries of cop­ing with the iso­la­tion and the pan­dem­ic restric­tions.

The dai­ly news cov­er local, region­al and nation­al infor­ma­tion relat­ing to COVID-19 top­ics, for both sta­tions, as well as inter­views with the local author­i­ties (may­ors) regard­ing the mea­sures tak­en, new local devel­op­ments, advices for cit­i­zens. 

These pro­grams also include inter­views with the direc­tors of the schools in the two com­mu­ni­ties to find out how the edu­ca­tion process is tak­ing place dur­ing this peri­od, along with inter­views with peo­ple from the com­mu­ni­ties to find out how to deal with the restric­tions imposed by the author­i­ties.

Last but not least, Radio Civic’s out­puts com­prise reg­u­lar­ly updat­ed infor­ma­tion on the pre­ven­tion of infec­tion, COVID-19-relat­ed adver­tise­ments every hour; updat­ed announce­ments of local inter­est regard­ing the sched­ule of food stores, the sup­ply options for the elder­ly; broad­cast­ing of the noti­fi­ca­tions and cam­paigns of pub­lic inter­est trans­mit­ted by the audio­vi­su­al reg­u­la­tor.

The tech­nol­o­gy devel­oped in the project is play­ing an impor­tant role in sup­port­ing these activ­i­ties. For exam­ple, Text-To-Speech (TTS) tech­nolo­gies recent­ly imple­ment­ed in Roman­ian com­mu­ni­ty radios are being deployed to deliv­er announce­ments about COVID-19 through the syn­thet­ic voice of Daria.

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