In a festive season treat for listeners to Victoria’s Indigenous radio station 3KND 1503AM, programming this week is coming from Cape York and the Gulf of Carpentaria, via the highly regarded Black Star Indigenous radio network.
Indigenous stations all over the country run with a small staff team and during holiday periods, they need to rely on a networked program service to allow their team to have a break. Usually the capital city radio stations provide programs for remote Australian services, but this year 3KND is reversing the role and giving city listeners the chance to hear a quality remote service.
Black Star is the highly professional indigenous network of 15 stations managed by us here QRAM from our hub in Cairns in partnership with the local communities. The service is available to anyone that has a Vast satellite decoder set to channel 920. It provides a seven-days-a-week news service, complete with up to date sporting results and local weather reports. For 3KND, Black Star is providing Melbourne and Victorian regional weather reports, to ensure programming remains relevant to local audiences.
The Black Star service is unique in Indigenous media. It brings the best of public, community, and commercial radio into a new format for remote Indigenous and rural Indigenous broadcasters. It makes the most of new technologies to provide a more comprehensive and flexible service for remote broadcasters, as well as the ability to tailor content for different audiences.
3KND’s Manager Jim Remedio is very familiar with the Black Star innovation, having been at the helm at QRAM during the network’s development from 2011 until moving to 3KND in early 2014.
He says “This is just a short term experiment to give our 3KND listeners something a bit different over the holiday system, and one where they can reliably receive news and weather along with some good music.”
Due to resource limitations, remote Indigenous radio services often supplement their local programming with broadcast content produced in the cities. But Remedio believes this is the first time that one of Australia’s many remote services has had a chance to showcase their content to an urban audience.
“Indigenous people have connections all over the country and its great to bring the new sound of the bush to the city. It also demonstrates what 3KND could provide for Indigenous Victorians living outside the capital city; with a similar network of stations supported by a hub at 3KND.”
3KND has a proposal before Government to expand their service to meet the needs of Aboriginal people across Victoria and will find out in the new year whether the southern state can catch up with their innovative friends up north.