As a child, I was easy to talk to. I loved livening things up.
Our teacher told us Radio Guné Yi would be visiting our village as part of a Plan International project. We were told we could be part of their project if we had good marks and were able to speak well in front of a microphone. I was secretly sure I’d be selected and was really happy when I turned out to be right.
When the team arrived, I felt intimidated. It was rare to see sound equipment, but I was able to master it after 5 days of training. The team put us at ease, provided lots of support, let us decide what we wanted to talk about and how we’d do it. We also chose the music to accompany the show.
Promoting education on the radio
After a few days of training, we presented the show to our community and neighbouring villages - decked out in T-shirts stamped ‘Gunéyi Radio - The voice of children’.
My relatives and friends were proud as we discussed the lack of education in our area. The show went very well and we felt like stars - everyone spoke so positively about it.
Our show was broadcast locally and nationally. Radio was – and still is - the most accessible and easiest medium to communicate with people in Senegal. Electricity is almost non-existent in remote areas. It meant people everywhere could listen in.
The Radio Guné Yi project has been a real turning point in my life. Wherever I’ve gone, I’ve talked with pride about it and have shared my experience with others.
As a professional journalist, I also work with young boys and girls providing media training.
I regularly talk to school directors about the benefits of radio and the impact it has on children. Once I’ve got their interest, I tell Plan International, so they can follow up with the school. Convincing a school to start a radio programme is so satisfying. It makes me feel like an ambassador for child rights.
Gaining skills through radio
Radio Guné Yi has given me confidence and experience. Through radio I’ve gained the skills I need to express myself, be heard, do things my own way and overcome obstacles. I want to share these experiences with others.
After many years of studying, I am now a trained journalist. I run 3 programmes which serve as platforms for me to debate the role of youth in society, but also to showcase young peoples’ opinions on politics. I also interview lots of people, such as popular Senegalese rappers.
I continue to dream big and to make the most of every opportunity that comes my way. Most of all, though, I am committed to reviving Radio Guné Yi, with the help of Plan International, as I want to encourage young people in Senegal to make their voices heard.