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Finance & Innovation

Wait until you see how this 15 y/o dazzled professors at MIT

When we think of radios, many of us think of grainy images from the early 20th century: Families sitting around a large old radio listening to cheesy mystery shows or news from the war. Today, most of us rarely use a radio outside the car. And even then, it's been greatly overshadowed by iPods and smartphones.

A little-told story however is that in Africa, the radio is more than just a form of entertainment on long car trips.

According to Children’s Radio Foundation (CRF), an NGO that trains youth reporters across five countries in Africa, roughly 80% of Africans have access to radio. There are many countries where internet and electricity are not always reliable so analogue forms of communication remain extremely valuable.

CRF, aside from training youth reporters, works to harness the power of radio to teach important life skills. Through their broadcasts, they provide people with entertainment, news, and important health information.

Another NGO, Health Poverty Action, broadcasts a radio soap opera that is making waves in Rwanda. The program, called Urunana, provides entertainment like a typical soap opera but also proliferates information in the public service by spreading news and commentary about social causes such as the value of education and access to family planning. Millions of Rwandans have tuned in.

The humble radio continues to transform lives of millions across the developing world. Watch the video to learn how a young African Dj dazzled scholars and professors at MIT.

Written by Jesse Allen-Dicker