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A Conversation with Kenia and Vilma

Where we work on the remote, north coast of Nicaragua, women face high rates of abuse. But in their isolated and impoverished communities, these women often lack access to vital information on lifesaving support services. 

With your support, our human rights radio station is changing that. With our local partners, Wangki Tangni, our programs spread awareness and share vital information on safe housing, legal protection and other lifesaving services for women threatened with violence. Our programs reach women living in 115 remote communities.

We recently visited the radio station and spoke with Kenia and Vilma, two of the human rights radio broadcasters. We asked them two questions: Why is the radio important? And what changes do you see in your community since the radio launched? Here are their answers.

Kenia:

It’s very important to have the radio station because many people don’t have any other way to get information. Our radio reaches every corner of our communities. It reaches people who don’t have televisions or other sources of information. With our radio, we’ve already broadcasted a lot of informative programs. 

The changes I have seen are that people who were suffering from violence are realizing, they are opening their eyes and looking for ways they can report their abuser, their aggressor. And that's a very good change because if the women are getting that out, getting out what they have inside, it means they are leaving their fears behind. 

Vilma:

There is importance in having the radio as a mode of communication. There are many types of communication, but it is more effective through a radio, through our station, to carry information to each community. For example, if we bring women together for a meeting, we can only bring so many women to share information with them. Other women in the community will lose out on information. But with the radio, we are reaching 115 communities! In these communities, the whole family is listening, everyone is benefiting from the information. 

Through the radio, we are also seeing that there is an effect. We are seeing a change in the lives of family members and the community. As much in men as in women. And in young people. There is a change, and cases of violence have been greatly reduced. I see that they are coming down. There is not as much violence as before. And I see that in my neighborhood, there is more peace. That is the impact of this radio. 

Thank you for your support of this project! With you by our side, Indigenous women in Nicaragua have found a vital path to safety. What’s more, our radio amplifies the lifesaving information women need to combat violence and end the cycles of abuse in their communities.

In the photo above, Vilma and Rose, leader of Wangki Tangni, stand outside of the human rights radio station.