12 October 2018
Association of Community Media, with the support of the UNESCO's International Programme for the Development of Communication (IPDC), held a seminar on Strengthening Sustainability of Community Media in Kyrgyzstan. The event took place in Bishkek on 3-4 October 2018 and Osh on 6-7 October 2018.As a result of training 25 community media outlets created interactive platform between representatives of local authorities and villagers and raising awareness of 141 thousand mostly rural population on progress towards to SDG 16 in promoting peaceful and inclusive societies, ensuring public access to information and protecting fundamental freedoms.
Community media demonstrated increased knowledge, skill and practice in the sourcing municipal social services for rural development and using it in radio programmes as well as in online multimedia materials, discussed and monitored with the participation of CSOs and rural residents.
46 participants of two seminars, including the leaders of community media and heads of villages association discussed international standards for the sustainability of community media in their daily work at villages and small towns of Kyrgyzstan.
Sustainability standards are presented in the UNESCO Community Media Sustainability Policy-Series. They call on government agencies to provide a regulatory environment that recognizes the value of community media and supports their long-term work.
The deputy director of the Information and Mass Communications Department at the Ministry of Culture, Information and Tourism of the Kyrgyz Republic, Ms Salkyn Sarnogoeva spoke at the seminar. She noted that the community media in Kyrgyzstan are full-fledged players in the information market of the country.
The heads of villages association expressed their readiness to support the work of community media and consider them as competitive players during tenders, as well as to support information campaigns on covering significant issues to inform local communities.
Community media is legalized and recognized by the state. The Ministry is open to cooperation with the community media.
Ms Salkyn Sarnogoeva
Currently, there are 3 community radio stations and 21 community multimedia centers in Kyrgyzstan. The leaders of community multimedia centers express the need for transformation of the media centers into full-fledged community radio stations.
Mr Islam Kudaibergenov, chief specialist of the Office of the governmental Radio Frequency Spectrum, said that since 2017 the issuance of a radio broadcasting license has been carried out through an auction. Interested parties can now purchase radio frequencies by participating in an online auction.
At the end of the seminar, the heads of community media together with the heads of villages associations developed plans and projects that provide local authorities’ support to the community media. The text of the memorandum of cooperation between local authorities and community media was also developed. The document includes a number of issues, including organization of interactions between local self-governments and community media in collecting, analyzing, preparing and disseminating socially significant information on the territory of villages association, as well as creating the necessary conditions for the development and sustainable functioning of community broadcasting in priority areas - to meet the challenges of producing and distributing all types of print, audiovisual, film-video and other types of products, including multimedia. The memorandum will come into force after approval of local authorities and will be valid on a long-term basis.