AFGHANISTAN: IRIN Radio project winds up

NAIROBI, 7 January 2010 (IRIN) - IRIN's humanitarian radio project in Afghanistan has closed after six years of work in local language programme production and capacity building for local radio journalists.

Since 2003, IRIN has trained close to 100 individual Afghan journalists and set up a unique network of 25 local correspondents based in 18 of the country's 34 provinces.

IRIN has worked with 20 local radio stations across the country, providing hands-on training and mentoring on making programmes on humanitarian issues.

The Radio team has produced more than 600 programmes in Dari and Pashto for national broadcast via local partners Radio Azadi, Salaam Watandar, and a network of FM stations.

The programming has consistently been praised for its focus on issues of relevance to ordinary Afghans, its use of simple language, the incorporation of ordinary Afghans' voices, and sometimes for its ground-breaking approach to themes not typically broached by the Afghan media.

All the programmes are available for download [] from the IRIN Radio archives.

In January 2010, IRIN will be launching a 60-page photo booklet on maternal mortality issues in Afghanistan, entitled Veil of Tears. The booklet is a collection of transcribed audio testimonies on loss in childbirth, as told by Afghan women, men and children, interviewed by the IRIN Radio team from 2005-2009. This collection of intimate stories gives a unique insight into today's Afghanistan, and serves to showcase some of the important work of the IRIN Radio project.

IRIN wishes to thank the donors (Japan, Canada, Norway, and the Netherlands) for their generous support. We also thank the IRIN Radio team members - staff and freelance - for their excellent work and dedication during the project. IRIN's text service maintains an office in Kabul for daily coverage of Afghanistan [] and the sub-region.