Community radio station needs support

Support community radio station 3CR.

The statement below was released by Melbourne’s 3CR Community Radio on May 1.

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In this federal election year, 3CR Community Radio is asking its listeners and supporters of independent media to make a political donation by giving money to the station during our annual Radiothon.

As the two big political parties slug it out in Canberra, the choice is clear — vote for 3CR’s progressive, alternative coverage of social, cultural and political issues.

A quick glance at the political donation data released by the Australian Electoral Commission will show why faith in our political system is at a low — it shows how corporate interests seek to buy political influence by donating to the major parties. And when you consider that billionaire mining magnates are seeking to buy up the media landscape as well, it’s more important than ever for stations like 3CR to continue to thrive.

To do this, we need your support during our June 3-16 Radiothon. Our continuous broadcasting of diverse voices and programs is a vital part of the democratic process and a lifeline to communities excluded by the mainstream media. The station is financially supported by the listening community and the annual Radiothon appeal directly supports the operational costs.

Now in its 37th year, 3CR is a local institution and gateway for empowering those often denied a voice in the mainstream media, particularly the working class, women, Indigenous people and the many community groups and community issues discriminated against in and by the mass media.

“We exist in a highly corporatised political and media environment,” said station manager Marian Prickett. “Our independence means we are able to tell people what’s happening in the world without worrying about what advertisers will think or what the ratings or opinion polls say because the voices on-air are the voices of real people.”

With a passionate crew of more than 400 volunteer programmers broadcasting 130 programs each week in over 20 languages, the station relies on its annual Radiothon to keep the station on-air for the next 12 months, covering bills, licence fees, equipment upgrades and a skeleton administrative staff.

“There’s a diversity at 3CR that’s completely unique and awe-inspiring,” Prickett said. “If you pick any ordinary day at the station you’ll find an incredible variety of people going to air, from the [Construction Forestry Mining Energy Union] CFMEU to housing activists to Melbourne’s Tamil community, which has been on-air since 1984.”

With a program guide for the whole community, 3CR features an array of inspiring shows including What’s The score $port? presented by former Herald Sun sports writer Trevor Grant. This program makes the connection between sport, money and politics.

Tamil Voice is presented by Aran Mylvaganam and focuses on the Tamil people's struggle for self-determination in Sri Lanka's north-east and seeks to highlight the human rights violations the Tamils suffer under repressive Sinhala regimes.

Roominations delves into issues of homelessness and is presented by a group of people who have a lived experience of homelessness and those living in rooming houses.

The Concrete Gang, presented by the CFMEU, has been with the station since it was founded in 1976.

This election, make your political donation to a true representative of the people — 3CR Community Radio.

[Make a tax-deductible donation online or call 3CR on (03) 9419 8377, or send a cheque or money order payable to “Community Radio Federation Ltd”, PO Box 1277, Collingwood, Victoria 3066.]