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Image: Youth reporters at the School Strike for Climate

As the late, great Whitney Houston sang, ‘I believe the children are our future…’ and while we don’t usually plan our work at Wellington Access Radio around song lyrics, we are bringing this notion into the launch of our brand-new Youth Broadcasting project.

The current youth shows will get a glow-up, with a new Youth Broadcasting logo, website page and promotional poster run, and the station focus for 2024 will be on the recruitment of new youth voices to host their own programmes.

Station Manager Tony Kemp says, ‘we believe that it is vitally important that youth are given a platform to share their thoughts, views and experiences in their own voices. They’ve got things to say that need to be heard – and they don’t always get the chance in mainstream media’.

High school student and host of Rainbow Talk Radio, Rebecca, agrees that it’s essential that young people get their voices heard, saying that her show has made a significant difference to rainbow rangitahi around Wellington.

‘I have received an array of really awesome responses over the course of the series. One response said, “I loved hearing an honest open discussion about unique queer experiences and being able to relate to the stories made me feel so much better in myself”. Being able to give these feelings to the rainbow youth of Wellington, my peers, is something I would not be able to do without the youth programme at Wellington Access Radio.’

The new-look Youth Broadcasting will be launched during the week of 6 May, with increased youth content throughout the weekly schedule, plus some extra youth-led specials, including a chat between some established youth hosts, and a 13-year-olds breakdown of the Taylor Swift fandom conspiracies.

The new Youth Broadcasting logo and poster campaign were created by a young designer we were able to engage thanks to the Wellington City Council Social & Recreation Fund. This funding has also allowed us to develop and support a number of new youth programmes – thanks Wellington City Council!

The Youth Broadcasting Week schedule is as follows:

Monday 6 May:
4pm – Rainbow Talk Radio

Tuesday 7 May:
1.30pm – The Helpful Lawyer youth episode
4pm – SpeakOUT
7pm – Que Onda youth episode

Wednesday 7 May:
1pm – The Rundown with Massey University
4.30pm – Interview with Rainbow Talk Radio host Rebecca

Thursday 9 May:
5am – Aua Ni Masu youth episode
6am – Yalo I Viti youth episode
4pm – Fem Radio

Friday 10 May:
5pm – In The Neighbourhood youth episode
7pm – Friday Feature Album youth episode

Saturday 11 May:
11am – Suzy & Friends
12.30pm – Generation Unfiltered – Mental Health episode
4pm – Luvei Viti Children of Fiji
5pm – Noda Bula youth episode

Sunday 12 May:
11.30am – Clownelia St – a Taylor Swift podcast
7pm – The Good Energy Project youth episode
9pm – Welly Deep