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Working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples

World Radio Day - celebrating Indigenous broadcasting in Australia

World Radio Day - celebrating Indigenous broadcasting in Australia

Indigenous Affairs Culture and Capability
Thursday, 13 February 2020

National Indigenous Australians Agency

World Radio Day 13 February 2020

On World Radio Day 2020, we take the opportunity to celebrate Indigenous radio broadcasting in Australia.

In 1985, many Indigenous communities gained access to radio and video broadcasts for the first time thanks to the launch of Australia’s first domestic satellite, AUSSAT.

To preserve the local languages and culture of these communities, the Australian Government set up Broadcasting for Remote Aboriginal Communities Scheme (BRACS) in 1987. BRACS would fund the establishment of Indigenous community radio stations.

Today there are more than 120 Indigenous Broadcast Services operating around Australia with an approximate listening audience of 100,000 people.

Indigenous broadcasting services:

  • unite communities by providing a forum to discuss local issues
  • unite people from different groups with different languages within the same community
  • provide news services featuring local content as well as national and international content
  • provide advice on health and safety, notifications on training and job opportunities and much more
  • warn listeners of potential disasters
  • entertain, inspire and uplift.

Indigenous broadcasting services continue to play an important role in the lives of Indigenous Australians in remote, regional and urban areas of Australia.

World Radio Day is a chance to celebrate those services and to thank the people who run them, who produce the content and who work hard to serve Indigenous Australians across our huge landscape.

Through the Indigenous Advancement Strategy, the Australian Government provides operational support to a number of Indigenous broadcasting and media organisations.