Radio based education, a viable alternative

Radio education is an effective tool to fight the population's illiteracy. The radio, as a massive communication media, reaches where schools and institutes cannot do so, because the majority of the households, even the poorest, usually have a radio. It is especially efficient in women's education.

This is true with the work carried out by the Fe y Alegría Radio Institute of Peru, supported by Entreculturas. This Institute teaches primary and secondary school lessons by radio. Two out of three of its pupils are women over 15 who did not attend school or were forced to drop out because of economic reasons. The radio becomes their school and they follow their lessons with books adapted to the cultural, economic and social reality of the most deprived groups. They attend physical school once a week and voluntary teachers explain their problems. Apart form offering primary education, the Institute seeks to generate personal alternatives to improve their social integration and quality of life. For this purpose and as an alternative activity, there are workshops on Saturdays related to productivity.

The Radio Institute is directed to the population over 15 in marginal urban areas in Lima, lacking in basic services such as health aid, education and roads.

To promote education for the less favoured is to give them an opportunity to improve their life conditions. Thanks to education they will be able to develop professionally, they will increase their self esteem and the vision of the world they will leave for their children.

The work supported by Entreculturas has enabled to place illiteracy in Peru's political agenda. The Peruvian government, through the National Programme for Literacy (PRONAMA), seeks to reduce illiteracy levels in rural areas. But there is still along way to go since illiteracy is not regarded as a national priority. The Fe y Alegría Radio Institute assumes this work since it considers it necessary for citizen, local, regional and national development.