While WIlcannia River Radio has always held an important role in the community, the station has become a crucial source of information and community spirit during the COVID19 crisis.
The radio station has taken on the responsibility of being a key distributor of official information during the pandemic, providing details on important updates and health warnings.
They have been engaging with local authorities and organisations, to help raise questions and concerns from the community, while connecting people with the services they need during this time.
They have even teamed up with WIlcannia Central School to create ‘local challenges’ - shared via Facebook, to engage kids and encourage creativity. One such challenge required them to write a poem, to honour our ANZACS.
‘There has been an incredible response’, says Team Leader Brendon Adams.
‘The amount of submissions we’ve had is incredible. People are really enjoying the challenges and it’s been really amazing to read all the wonderful poems.’
They also helped organise a special video, where kids from the school performed ‘From Little Things, Big Things Grow’ - rewritten with lyrics about the current situation, and the strength of the Wilcannia community. It had over 30,000 views in 4 days!
‘Living in a remote community means online learning is not really an option for many of the students,’ says Brendon.
‘So we have organised for teachers to come into the station and help deliver education through the radio into their homes.’
‘We’ve also made sure we are staying in touch with Elders, to check how they are coping as many of them haven’t seen their families for a long time. So when we can, we travel to their homes and organise a video call to their grandkids, using our technology.’
Brendon says the whole community has come together to ensure everyone gets through this.
‘All the staff at Wilcannia Central School are just going above and beyond for their students, doing everything they can to keep them engaged, it’s incredible. And Miss Sarah, singing in that video - what a voice!’
‘We’ve also had Greg Hill from Central Darling Shire and Anthony Moodie from the Barrier Police District in to help give the community important information about staying safe and accessing essential services.’
‘And even just our everyday heroes dedicating their time to help everyone stay positive, like Chris Graham who helped us create the From Little Things, Big Things Grow video, as well as Frances Dutton and Nakeisha Jackson.’
If you wish to watch the video, you can find it on the Wilcannia Central School page.
REDI.E is proud of our Radio Station and will ensure they have all the resources they need to continuing to provide a wonderful service for their community.
This initiative is funded/supported by the Australian Government.