The Community Participation and Communication Support Programme, funded by the Oxfam Novib, will construct two more community radio stations in Laos’ northern Oudomsay province this year.

Director of the Mass Media Department, Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism, Pinprathana Phanthamaly unveiled the information at an annual review meeting on the programme on March 26.

The two community radio stations are due for the target districts of Houn and Namoh in Oudomsay.

The Community Participation and Communication Support Programme aims to support civil society in a wider manner through supporting community organisations and helping scale up community media, strengthening understanding of gender equity, enhancing a positive and nondiscriminatory portrayal of women.

It has been designed to develop local capacity to sustain community media in the longer term to help communities enjoy better access to information and bottom-up communication channels, allowing them to take informed decisions, express their views, share knowledge and validate their cultures and traditions.

Furthermore, the Programme will support the sustainability of community organisations especially community media organisations.

The coverage of the community radios has doubles since 2012. Four community radios are now broadcasting in eight different ethnic dialects of the community reaching out to more than 110,000 people across these districts namely Laoloum, Hmong, Khmou, Ta-Oy, Triang, Katu, and Phong.

There are plans to launch the next radio station in Nonghed district of Xiengkhouang province by May this year and two additional stations in Houn and Namor later this year.-VNA