This issue of Media Development goes in search of the missing UN Sustainable Development Goal that underpins all the other SDGs. Goal 18: Expand and strengthen public civic spaces through equitable and affordable access to communication technologies and platforms, media pluralism, and media diversity. Its aim is to contribute to the debate about society, its values and priorities, and, above all, to our common future.
WACC partner Coordinadora Nacional Ancestral de Derechos Indigenas Maya Chorti de Honduras (CONADMICH) is a Maya Chorti community development association established in 2009 to serve the Maya Chorti people in the departments of Copán Ruinas and Ocotepeque of Honduras. It seeks to advance Indigenous rights and contribute to the development of the 30 small communities it serves. It has a strong track record in defending the right to land of indigenous communities. The organization is well connected to top civil society groups across the country.
The communities CONADMICH serves have several unmet communication needs. Internet access is limited and expensive. Cellular telephony hasn’t taken off in the area due to limited infrastructure. Television and radio content does not address the reality and issues faced by the communities, including linguistic diversity. 37 % of the population is illiterate. There is a lack of spaces for dialogue and exchange among local civil society organizations, where women in particular are affected.
This project seeks to enable CONADMICH to establish a community radio station in order to meet these needs and to help strengthen local social organizing processes. It also aims to integrate a gender justice approach into the way the station operates. Activities include community consultations, capacity building on station management and media production, training on gender equality, launch of online radio station, and application for a broadcasting license. The project will also place CONADMICH in a better position to establish a sustainable community radio station over the next two years.