Radio Sagarmatha: Voice of a Valley and Hope of a nation

Location filming Saving the Planet in Nepal
Location filming Saving the Planet in Nepal

I have written more than once in this blog about Radio Sagarmatha of Nepal, the first independent community broadcasting station in South Asia.

In May 2007, on the occasion of their 10th anniversary, I called it Kathmandu Valley’s beacon of hope. I have known and admired the Nepali friends who are running the award-winning, public-spirited radio station.

I’m delighted, therefore, to be able to make a short film about one facet of Radio Sagarmatha: their contribution to education for sustainable development, ESD for short.

Radio Sagarmatha’s path-breaking work in the resort town of Nagarkot is the story in one film of Saving the Planet, TVE Asia Pacific’s new regional TV series showcasing communities thinking globally and acting locally.

The six-episode series, which was 18 months in the making, features outstanding efforts in education for sustainable development in South and Southeast Asia.

It goes in search of answers to these key questions: Can ordinary people help save our planet under siege from multiple environmental crises? How can everyone change attitudes and lifestyles to consume less and generate less waste?

Here’s the official synopsis of the Nepal story, titled Voice of a Valley:

Tourism generates incomes, jobs and markets for the people of Nagarkot, a popular resort close to the Nepali capital Kathmandu. But it had a bumpy start when hoteliers initially bypassed local communities. These tensions were diffused by Radio Sagarmatha, the country’s first independent public radio station, which brought all interested parties together on the air. This example shows how media can do more than just report. By inspiring discussion and debate, media can help communities to find the best solutions or compromises for their development needs.

Watch Saving the Planet: Voice of a Valley

Many thanks to friends at the Nepal Forum of Environmental Journalists (NEFEJ), for their help in making this short film about one of their most outstanding efforts.

Find the full credits of the film here

Author: Nalaka Gunawardene

A science writer by training, I've worked as a journalist and communication specialist across Asia for 30+ years. During this time, I have variously been a news reporter, feature writer, radio presenter, TV quizmaster, documentary film producer, foreign correspondent and journalist trainer. I continue to juggle some of these roles, while also blogging and tweeting and column writing.

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