La Radio Q Género is using radio as a tool to raise public awareness about gender discrimination in Colombia.

Why we care: In Colombia, women from marginalized populations are often ignored by media and society.

How we’re solving this: Training women in communication, media, and technology skills to raise their voices and bring their opinions into the media.

Colombian women living in rural areas, as well as young, Afro-descendent, indigenous, and lesbian, bisexual and trans gender women face discrimination and often do not have the opportunities, or the skills to express their opinions in public forums.

In many rural areas in Latin America, radio is the cheapest, most accessible, and widespread form of mass communication. La Radio Q Género, founded in 2005, is using radio as a tool to raise public awareness about gender discrimination, an issue that is rarely touched on in the media. Radio Q is now taking its programming one step further by developing women-led radio emissions. Through technical, communication, and advocacy trainings, women will take the lead in developing messaging and web and radio broadcasts to raise their voices and influence public opinion. Initially 10 women from Cali, Colombia will participate in five technical training workshops.

Radio Q aims to have over 100 women, equipped with digital media skills, produce radio emissions, blogs, and websites. Broadcasts will call attention to the need to end sexist stereotypes and attitudes, and encourage more women to get involved in local and national politics. Radio and website broadcasts will also spread awareness on the reality of gender discrimination in Colombia, and will pressure media and political representatives to ensure gender equality in the workplace, family life, and in educational institutions.

Most importantly, radio will be used as a tool to empower women who usually don’t get the opportunity to share their opinions and speak out in public. Women participants will gain a supportive network that cares about what they have to say and will encourage them to express their opinions.