10 February 2017
Geneva, 10 February - The United Nations Information Service in Geneva will be celebrating World Radio Day on Monday, 13 February with a series of events, including interviews with the United Nations’ radio partners and a Facebook Live virtual tour of the studios at the Palais des Nations.
Activities will highlight the important role played by radio in communicating the work of the United Nations to a wider public.
UN Radio has come a long way from the 1946 makeshift studios and offices at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, where it transmitted its first call sign: “This is the United Nations calling the peoples of the world.” News bulletins and feature programmes were broadcast in the Organization’s then five official languages – Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish – for 9 to 12 hours each day. Arabic was added in 1974. UN Radio EN has 73 partner countries.
In 2016, the UN Radio Geneva team produced close to 1,000 reports, features, interviews and other audio items, mainly in English and French, but also in Arabic, Portuguese, Russian, Chinese and Spanish.
Facebook Live Virtual Tour
To keep up with the times, radio is adapting to stay in touch with listeners, particularly the younger ones, who increasingly follow the news on their smartphones. Join the United Nations Information Service for UN Geneva’s interactive Facebook Live tour of the studios at the Palais des Nations on Monday 13 February, at 10 a.m. CET at https://www.facebook.com/UN.Geneva. This behind-the-scenes guided tour will be in French and English.
During this 30-minute broadcast, colleagues from UN Radio Geneva and the United Nations Information Service in Geneva will lead viewers on a tour of the UN Radio Geneva studios, showing the operations, meeting the sound engineers, and explaining the work that goes into preparing radio shows.
Interviews with the United Nations’ Radio Partners
On Monday, 13 February, interviews with the United Nations’ radio partners will be broadcast in French and English – the working languages of the UN Secretariat. To hear them, visit www.unmultimedia.org/radio/english/ or www.unmultimedia.org/radio/french.
The Information Service will also provide links to this material to all of its online followers via its social media platforms, promote the event using the #WorldRadioDay hashtag, and link it to the World Radio Day website at http://www.diamundialradio.org/home.
The audio material includes an interview in French with Nicolas Vultier, head of the foreign desk at Radio Suisse Romande, which will focus on the relevance of International Geneva to Swiss listeners, its role in helping to resolve conflicts such as in Syria and Cyprus, and the moves taken by UNOG Director-General Michael Møller to bring the work of the United Nations closer to the people it serves.
World Radio Day is also an opportunity to highlight the peace-building role played by Guira FM, the United Nations’ radio station in the Central African Republic. Its director, Jean-Pierre Ramazani, speaking in French, also discusses the impact of radio reports from Geneva on efforts to end impunity for human rights abuses in the country, as well as humanitarian issues.
In English, Sarah Marshall from the United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS) describes the constructive role played by radio in countries blighted by unexploded remnants of war.
She’ll be joined by Dr. Gaya Gamhewage from the World Health Organization (WHO) who shares her experience of leading a Zika awareness-raising campaign for radio in four languages.
Promoting UNOG Activities on World Radio Switzerland
Every Monday, UNOG partner World Radio Switzerland conducts a live segment with the UNOG radio team to highlight upcoming events for the week, and this Monday it will provide an ideal opportunity to promote our World Radio Day content to listeners.
Recordings are available on https://worldradio.ch
For use of the information media; not an official record