Bulala FM is a local radio station established in 2009 through a partnership between the Kenya Meteorological Department and the community of Budalangi. It is located in Port Victoria, Budalangi constituency, Busia County. Currently broadcasting on 107.5 FM in Kiswahili and Kinyala, a local dialect, the radio station serves listeners within a 21 km broadcast range and a population of almost 750 000. The station currently has 17 staff members and volunteers comprised of nine men and eight women.
Bulala was created in response to the recurrent flooding the region experiences each year. In situations of crisis and emergency, radio is a one-to-many medium with the ability to communicate critical messages to entire communities.
The mission of Bulala FM is to provide listeners with a platform to address and discuss issues with the help of improved information sharing, education and communication to promote social, political and economic well-being among the people of Bundalangi. They are pursuing their mission through targeted radio programs of primary local concern that diffuse essential information to the station’s listeners.
A summary of the issues of local concern focused on at Bulala FM includes:
Agriculture and Food Security
- Animal diseases
- Poor sanitation
- Waterborne diseases
- Non-potable water
- Inadequate health facilities
Child Abuse and Child Labour
- Sexual and physical abuse
- Child labour
- Loopholes in the legal and justice systems
- Low reporting rates
- Parent and guardian interference with child’s best interests