Osama shares the importance of radio on World Radio Day

Feb 13, 2016
Ben Parsons

Today is World Radio Day, which celebrates radio as a medium and aims to encourage major networks and community radio alike to promote access to information, freedom of expression and gender equality over the airwaves.

Here one of the Queen’s Young Leaders Award winners Osama Bin Noor talks about the radio show he hosts for teenagers in Bangladesh called Teen Tekka:

“Being a teenager can be a vulnerable stage in a person’s life, as it is the time when we transition from childhood to adulthood. This transition can often be difficult, with various overwhelming emotions sometimes making it hard to distinguish between right and wrong. Changing bodies, falling in love, getting bullied, and many other scenarios can result in teenagers being scared to express their feelings.

“Around 65% of the population in Bangladesh is classed as ‘youth’. When I was a teenager, I struggled a lot and did not have a safe haven to talk about my problems. That is why I decided, along with three friends, to set up a radio show to create a comfortable place for young people to discuss their fears and concerns.

“We chose radio as the medium, as it is easy for everyone to access. The pilot show aired on 21st April 2015. The response to the first show was overwhelming and made me realise how much the teenagers needed this.

“Through my organisation Youth Opportunities [an online platform which advertises scholarships, internships and conferences] I have always tried to guide young people on how to excel in their careers, but the radio show was a completely new experience for me. By reading the messages of the teenagers and hearing their stories, I was happy to be able to provide some personal guideline for them as well.

“The strength of the show is that we maintain a strict privacy policy, so teenagers can share their story anonymously, without the fear of being judged. During the two hour show, we not only offer advice, but also try to show the power of positive energy and, most importantly, how they can overcome their problems. The show also has fun elements and today we are a family of more than 2,500 teenagers, which continues to grow.

“My work with Youth Opportunities and Teen Tekka helped me to win a Queen’s Young Leader Award. This has motivated me a lot and made me determined to continue to help young people in the future.”

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