We are sharing something a bit different from our usual blogs. We find ourselves in a challenging situation with the licensing process for the Bulungula Community Radio (BCR). Despite our dedicated efforts, our application for the community sound broadcasting service license has been repeatedly denied by the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA).

Community radio remains the most effective way to share information in our local language within our community. This was particularly evident during the COVID-19 pandemic, where our targeted communication strategies played a significant role in educating the community about the benefits of vaccination. These efforts were instrumental in achieving a remarkable 95% vaccination rate locally.

However, our growth and sustainability are being hindered by what we see as minor and trivial bureaucratic hurdles in the licensing process. Read more, Ground Up: Community radio stations challenge ICASA over rejected licence applications.

Our DJs are passionate volunteers who have expressed a strong desire to professionalise the station. We have developed an advertising strategy so the station can generate income to transition from a volunteer-driven model to a self-sustaining entity. Our ultimate goal is for all our projects, including the radio station, to run independently from Bulungula Incubator. However, without the proper license, our ability to engage in income-generating advertising and expand the station’s audience is halted.

As we continue to advocate for our rightful place on the airwaves, we remain dedicated to enriching our community through the power of radio. Do you know something that can help? Let us know: info@bulungulaincubator.org