The Day Our Idea of Community Changed

The Day Our Idea of Community Changed

Read the letter from Jacaranda FM's MD, Deirdre King, below.

Deirdre King MD

I was listening to Rian on the Scenic Drive last week Thursday - and as only Rian can - he left me (and a lot of other listeners) thinking differently about community, more specifically that we need to expand our communities to survive. It’s a great listen if you missed it. 

It’s taken Jacaranda FM 35 years to establish a diverse community where our listeners and their communities’ needs direct how we respond.

I think we have the opportunity to use this approach in how we reframe and expand our personal communities.

From make-overs to raising millions, our community efforts vary so greatly that we’re able to impact every kind of South African, even the furry kind. 

In the last ten days, we have given away R300,000 to the hospitality and entertainment industry who have been ravaged by COVID-19, and Martin Bester and Good Morning Angels raised R570,000 to help 19 children waiting to receive life-changing medical assistance at the Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital. 

This is community.

This morning we assisted a children’s home on the Bluff in Durban with much-needed funds and tomorrow we will be helping the NSPCA in Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal, one of many things we are doing to support communities who have experienced looting and unrest. 

This is community. 

In the coming weeks on Good Morning Angels, we will be helping victims of the unrest in Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal. This is community.

Community building is done by going where the community need is. 

Community can also be built through sharing. Sadly, community radio stations like Alex FM and Mams Radio were affected by the looting, together with a couple of other radio stations, Jacaranda FM supplied much-needed equipment and technical expertise to make sure they were back on-air as fast as possible, as these community stations are an essential lifeline for the very communities that have been affected.

This is community.

You can help and grow your community by simply sharing information or volunteering time like so many South Africans did this past week. Watching resilient South Africans clean up our streets and businesses was incredibly powerful, but so is a quiet nomination.  

Jacaranda FM will be providing a space where community members who need help and those in the community that can help, will be matched. Over the next couple of weeks, we will be launching an initiative to assist with rebuilding businesses affected by the devastation.  

The hospitality and entertainment industry has been hard-hit for months now, if you would like to give a helping hand to those who are unable to earn an income during the current lockdown restrictions, click here.

Whatever your response to this past week and the burdens of COVID-19, we have a massive community building opportunity and should use it to recreate the hopeful narrative our democracy was built on.

I really hope that 15 July will mark the day that our idea of community changed.

From a hopeful leader of a hopeful company,

Thank you for being part of our special community,

Deirdre King

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