A Family Affair

A new day, a new radio station to visit.

Words cannot describe how excited we were when we found out that National Radio Corporation (RCN) agreed to meet with us in Guatemala. We had already known about their three month radio campaign with World Food Program Guatemala promoting La Ventana de los Mil Días in 2012. What we didn’t know was how these radio spots sounded: Were they only in Spanish? Were they geared towards the capital to raise awareness about chronic child malnutrition? Did the 10 child nutrition interventions ever reach the communities most affected by chronic malnutrition? The answer was YES!

IMG_5234_0.JPGNational Radio Corporation (RCN) is an impressive private radio station that’s a true family business. For three generations this commercial radio station has been socially conscious. Today, we met with Alejandro, the grandson of RCN founders. He explained his grandparents were always concerned with the well-being of their community and did outreach with those in need, particularly kids. Fast forward 55 years to the present and RCN’s concern for all Guatemaltecos has grown, taking this responsibility seriously. Three years ago it created a foundation, RCN Apoya, to channel all of its social development efforts. When we asked Alejandro about the reason for RCN’s sustained philanthropic spirit he replied, “It is our responsibility as a form of mass media.”

In the case of their three month radio campaign, RCN realized the importance of producing radio spots in three Mayan languages--- with the help of FGER!--- as well as adapting the spots’ content to a rural indigenous audience. We left RCN’s headquarters with a pen drive full of radio spots in Quiché, Kak’chikel and Kekchi.

Check out the Quiché radio spot here:

While we have no idea what the Mayan radio spots say ourselves, we certainly comprehend the essential message of these recordings: to attempt to communicate chronic malnutrition solutions to a marginalized population.

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Graphic from RCN Apoya. Photo from Explorers in Guatemala.

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