Nepal: Risk-reduction by Radio
If you turn on your radio in the mountain villages of Nepal, you can hear people singing about natural disasters.
Songs and radio drama have taught 80,000 villagers in the remote mountain areas of Nepal about floods, mudslides and earthquakes.
Each year these disasters destroy harvests, block paths, or in the worst cases, take the lives of residents of these mountainous areas. The short melodic jingles that play on the radio are easy to remember and remind people about good risk-reduction practices.
For example, one song teaches people that they should not cut down all the trees on a mountainside if they want to avoid dangerous mudslides. Information about how to build a good protection wall is also being spread. Radio journalists have interviewed survivors of recent disasters and shared their stories on air so that others can learn from their experience.
In most of the mountainous regions of Nepal, 70 percent of the population is illiterate. But most people have a small radio which is their way of gaining new knowledge: in this case valuable knowledge about preventing disasters.