Supporting Radio Meraj
Radio Meraj has once again won top awards in media in Western Afghanistan!
The Afghanistan Institute for Research and Studies held a contest for 161 media outlets. Meraj was permitted to enter 3 categories and won all 3! Meraj won best news package, best analysis and speakers and best innovative programming. In addition, a photographer working with AIL won the best photography prize for one of his AIL photographs.
The competition attracted media outlets from all over the western zone including the well- known stations that have been operating for decades. Meraj’s success is remarkable in that it has been in operation for only two years yet won awards usually associated with stations of 5 plus years of experience. It won the most awards among all the existing media.
Radio Meraj is many years ahead of its strategic plan and has gained popular and professional credibility and success making it one of the top three Herat stations. The station operates 20 hours a day reaching 9 out of the 15 districts of Herat.
Private Station - Radio Meraj
Dr. Yacoobi had wanted to start a private radio station for some time in order to reach hundreds of thousands more with messages about health and education. This dream is now a reality as Radio Meraj is broadcasting 20 hours a day to 9 out of 15 districts of Herat Province. Meraj means "reaching for the highest good." Many people who live in remote locations and have no opportunity to get to a workshop or seminar on important issues of health, education, citizenship and human rights now can hear this information on the radio. "Education is the first step for development and media is the best tool for carrying out education goals," said a senior AIL advisor.
The station has been in operation since May 2015 and has become one of the most popular stations in Herat, winning a nation media award in 2016. The station has programming of benefit to the community including, health, education, human rights and social values together with music and news. Listenership has dramatically increased and is estimated at 2 million people (following a survey done using the Cochran Formula). In May 2017, Meraj won the top awards in the 3 categories it entered at the Zonal Best Media event (Afghanistan Institute for Research and Studies) competing against 161 media outlets.
The radio station is housed on the top floor of the Afghan Institute of Learning's Herat office building and receives some support from AIL in the area of programming but remains a separate private entity and is working towards self-sufficiency.