A new radio station is to be created in Galway to give a voice to migrants and ethnic minorities.
The Galway Online Community Radio (GOCOM) will be officially launched in the coming weeks. The station will be volunteer run.
Islammiyah Saudique-Kadejo, member of the Amdalah Africa Foundation (AMDAF) and GOCOM founder gave her reasons to create the new station.
“GOCOM will be the premier minority ethnic group community radio in Galway. Its goal is to be the voice to ethnic minorities in Galway to bridge their underrepresentation in mainstream media.
“We have Galway Bay FM and Flirt FM. The first one is general community interest and the second is student interest,” she said.
The new station will be dedicated to talking about the daily life, opinions and cultures of ethnic minorities across the city.
Ms Saudique-Kadejo explained: “We are talking about focus here, we are not talking about just putting once in a while or once in a week a program because that will not be enough.
“There is a lot to be said, a lot to be represented, and it needs a platform that starts doing that. GOCOM will be looking into the interests of the minorities, issues that affect them.
“Indigenous Music is one of the things that migrants will miss as migrants in new communities. There has been a constant demand for it.”
Ms Saudique-Kadejo said that GOCOM will give listeners the possibility to listen to shows in other languages than English, what could be crucial during periods of time like the pandemic.
“Not every ethnic minority understand the English language. So we are talking about all the languages spoken by ethnic minorities as well. We could have languages from South Africa, from Kenya, from Poland, from Nigeria.
“They are so many languages we want to bring in. It is important for everybody to know and to understand the news, to be able to protect ourselves with Covid-19,” she said.
Ms Saudique-Kadejo hopes the new radio station will address current issues that are affecting people. “There are government plans for the direct provision in the next couple of months or the hate crime legislation that we just started talking about. These are huge things, are very important things that everybody needs to be aware of. We will make it come to the grassroots,” she said.