Community FM ‘Connect:Transmit’ conference – a boost to the community radio sector

November 7, 2013 in Project News by Cormac Lawler

The first national community radio conference for many years – the Community FM ‘Connect:Transmit’ event – took place in Manchester on the 5th October 2013, hosted by Radio Regen. Over 100 people attended the conference, coming from as far afield as Aberdeen, Newry and Bristol. Delegates included four groups of young people from across the country who had participated in Connect:Transmit, a two year project funded by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation to develop young people’s speaking and listening skills through community radio. There were also workshops on a variety of subjects, including the current funding landscape, gleaning ideas from social enterprises, working with young people, and project monitoring and evaluation.

As anticipated, the conference proved a great opportunity for people involved in community radio across the country to get together and share ideas about how to make best use of community radio, and overcome the challenges currently faced by the sector.  Delegates told us that they were very happy with the event and called for a repeat – one saying it “MUST be an annual event”.  They said that outstanding sessions included ‘funding your station’ and the presentation by leading social entrepreneur Fay Selvan.

Overall, the day was extremely positive – with lots of ideas for how to fund stations, how and why to work together, and how to sustain and strengthen both individual stations, and the sector more generally. There was a strong shared feeling that the community radio sector needs more opportunities to get together – which Radio Regen is very keen to facilitate.

As Radio Regen Director, Phil Korbel, said: “community radio people are by definition passionate about their work, creative and resilient.  Put a large bunch of them in a room and it’s hard not to have fun and generate good ideas.  This weekend in Manchester was no exception and we look forward to staying in touch with delegates and helping them make their stations thrive in these difficult times.”

To find out more about Connect:Transmit, and view the resources it has generated, see the rest of this site.

A social media ‘story’ of the event can be seen here: http://storify.com/radioregen/community-fm-presents-connect-transmit and many more pics, taken by Liz Hardwick, can be seen here.

Radio Regen also hosts a portal for community radio resources, The Community Radio Toolkit – http://www.communityradiotoolkit.net