3CR’s national programs: high quality, independent radio nationwide

Image: sustainablemelbourne.com

From the red sands of Woomera and Alice Springs to Yeppoon in tropical Queensland, down to the urban cities and towns of the southern states, then back over to the precious West Australian coastline, 3CR’s national programs are currently being played on more than 50 of 150 community radio stations around the nation, with this number aiming to increase over the coming year.

Across the station there are nine diverse programs, which are broadcast nationally on the Community Radio Network (CRN).

Each week presenters from each program produce a half hour program that gets packaged and uploaded to the CRN’s Digital Delivery Network online. From there subscriber stations all around the country are able to pull the shows and play them on their grid. This means that each national show is produced with a national perspective and rarely assumes that people are aware of things happening locally or nationally.

Strictly structured to fit a 27:50 minute time slot, programmers usually interview two to three sources and spend anywhere from five hours up to two days editing and producing the final product (or even months for longer projects). As documentary radio has progressed and changed over the years, 3CR’s national programs have been exploring interesting and challenging storytelling techniques and methods; such as the use of ambient and environmental sounds, field recordings, in-situ interviews and music to cover a topic in great depth and rigour.

If you’re interested in issues by and about women from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds with a commitment to progressive politics, then tune in to Accent of Women.

If you’re looking for something a little louder with an anarchist analysis on local, national and international news and events then listen to Anarchist World this Week.

Unquestioningly, climate change is one of the most dire predicaments of our time, and being able to reverse its effects is the most important challenge to ever confront humanity. It is a crisis that will affect the lives of every one of us more than any other single issue. Beyond Zero Emissions broadcasts weekly critical discussions and interviews on this pivotal moment in history.

In true grassroots environmental fashion, Earth Matters presents local, national and international environmental issues with a strong social justice bent. Bringing fresh environmental news and perspectives to listeners, Earth Matters contributes to public debate, reports on under-reported activist campaigns and informs the community on critical ecological issues.

For something a little different and a program widely popular across Australia, Let the Bands Play presents music of military bands, brass bands and concert bands from worldwide sources, together with biographical comments regarding composers, conductors, bands and interesting historical events relating to much of the music.

For a weekly fix of science and technology news Lost in Science has it all, a half hour science digest program presenting entertaining news and discussion about research that has a heavy impact on society. Presenters draw on a wide range of resources including the excellent Eureka Alert, the news site of the American Association for the Advancement of Science; the British Medical Journal; and Australia’s biggest science and technology research organisation, CSIRO.

Responding to a global dilemma in the face of nuclear catastrophe, the Radioactive Show covers comprehensive nuclear, peace and sustainability issues from around the world. On air for more than 35 years, the Radioactive Show has been present at many of Australia’s anti-nuclear struggles nationwide.

For a long time now union and workplace justice issues have been covered professionally and meticulously by the Stick Together team. It is Australia’s only radio show that provides a forum for workers (employed and unemployed), unions and community activists to give their perspective on industrial, justice and employment issues affecting our communities.

And lastly, one of the oldest national programs on 3CR, back when tapes were being packaged and posted off for national distribution, Women on the Line have been featuring women’s voices, issues and commentary each week to listeners like you. Since 1986 Women on the Line has provided a gender analysis of contemporary issues, as well as in-depth analysis by a range of women around Australia and internationally.

Some of 3CR’s national programs are funded by grants from the Community Broadcasting Foundation. Providing a little more capacity for programmers to delve deeper into the issues they’re covering, whilst being able to put food on the table. However, most programmers are volunteers as is the tradition with community radio.

If you want to find out more about any of 3CR’s National Programs head to www.3cr.org.au/nationalprograms or call (03) 9419 8377 or if you want to know how to get any of 3CR's National Programs played on your local community radio station, contact the Community Radio Network.

[Jessie Boylan is the national programs project worker at 3CR.