Some interesting back story on how KUAV 105.1 Kwatsan Radio in Winterhaven, California got its inspiration. Members of the Fort Yuma Quechan tribe started an Internet radio station in 2010 to foster a “modern approach to increasing knowledge around the culture and traditions of the Quechan people,” according to the operation’s website. But the stream’s non-profit owner decided to apply for a Low Power FM construction permit in large part because the project wasn’t reaching older Quechan residents on the reservation.
“One of the things that we have identified as a result of rolling out online streaming radio was that older adults and elders often don’t have access to smartphones and WiFi and home desktop computers,” Brian Golding, Vice President of Kwatsan Radio, told community college station KJZZ-FM in an interview last week.
“We realized that we needed a real radio broadcast signal to be able to reach out to a lot of those folks and help make the connection between the knowledge that many of those folks in our community have, and enable them to share it with some of our younger listeners.”
In January that application came through, and Kwatsan Radio is now in the fundraising stage of its development.
Some of the station’s on-air content will focus on issues like tribal language education, land-leasing rules, and understanding the American Indian Probate Reform Act. “We can play a big role that off-reservation media outlets really won’t get involved in because it doesn’t really sell advertising,” Golding explained.
That last point is, of course, one of the many reasons why community supported non-commercial radio is so important. Just saying . . .
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