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World Radio Day: Democratic Youth Education in Angola

February 14, 2012

City Manager and Head of the Cefato Matoco Council, Tando Fransisco, meets with the School Parliament participants to share information.

In celebration of World Radio Day this month, The Soul Beat newletter highlights the role of SFCG in using radio in Africa’s social development, from peacebuilding to civic education to community radio research.

As the second part of a three-piece series, the focus today will be on the democratic radio outreach to youth in Angola.

The civic youth education project is based on a model that was first used in Burundi in 2005, but was adapted to the Angolan context in 2009. The program stresses the importance of participation in order for community voices to be represented in the government.

The most recent elections in 2008 opened a window for reform and increased dialogue between the government and civil society, raising high hopes among the people. Without civic education, youth may not appreciate the complexity and slow-moving nature of the political structures with which they wish to engage.

SFCG is working to foster a thorough culture of democracy and civic engagement through the School Parliament Program. The program invites students and local and national government leaders to meet, discuss and debate face-to-face, as well as through radio and television broadcasts.

The main program engages with students drawn from the 10 municipalities of the Luanda province, but SFCG is using its weekly radio program Baza Madie to increase dialogue on democracy and governance. Themes such as ‘diversity can enhance good governance’ are highlighted in on the radio program, thereby reaching a diverse range of young people throughout Luanda.

SFCG is planning for expansion, such as creating conflict resolution centers in schools with current program participants serving as mediators among their peers.  Also, there is the possibility of youth exchange, for instance with Guinea-Bissau’s National Infantile Parliament, and institutionalizing the Student Parliament curriculum in Angola and other Portuguese-speaking African countries.

To read The Soul Beat’s full article, check it out here.

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