UNICEF and the Association of Radio Operators in India (AROI) have launched the first initiative to work towards 100 per cent immunisation of children in India. Currently, 4,000 deaths a day occur in India that could have been avoided if the children were immunised.
The launch was done through a two-day workshop for radio journalists (programmers and jockeys) that was attended by about 50 radio professionals from many radio stations from all over India, including Big FM, Radio Mirchi, Red FM, Radio One, Radio Chokolate, Radio Mantra, AIR, FM Rainbow , Radio Misty, etc., at AJK Mass Communication Research Centre, JMI, New Delhi.
Unicef Chief of Communications Caroline Dan Duk was elated at the high energy and creative levels of the radio professionals and hoped that the almost all pervasive reach of radio would be used to eradicate diseases covered by routine immunisation, as was done for polio in India.
Speaking at the occasion, Anurradha Prasad, President AROI said, “FM radio has brought in vibrancy to radio broadcasting and is extremely popular across various sections of people - students, housewives, vendors and executives. It can play a significant role in promoting important social issues while weaving them in regular programming.”
With limitation on news and current affairs likely to be removed from private radio shortly, social development training is the first step of metamorphosis from radio jockeys to radio journalism.
AROI and UNICEF request all citizens in India to participate in saving 4,000 child lives a day through routine immunisation.
A jeep to carry the message across the country was also flagged off.