What really differentiates community media from their local commercial counterparts is that they see themselves, from their foundation, as part of the community. They do not just serve the community, or reflect the interests of the community, they engage directly with the community and the community engages directly with them – they are inseparable. It is not just about capturing the attention of listeners, it is about listening to the community, being part of the community by engaging in activities, amplifying the voices of diverse groups in the community, opening a space for volunteers to take part directly and indeed to manage and run the station. Most of all it is about contributing to the overall social benefit of the community, as part of and engaging with the wider local empowerment and development infrastructure.
The Annex to this document comprises a set of nine diverse stories that describe, concretely, how the community and community stations interacting, in ways that benefit individuals and groups locally, and ultimately the community as a whole.