A Visit to Radio Huayacocotla In Veracruz, Mexico
While walking the streets of Huayacocotla in Veracruz, Mexico, you will find men, women, and children carrying small radios around town or in fields where they work – and they are all listening to the same community radio station: Radio Huayacocotla: La Voz Campesina.
At its launch in 1965, Radio Huayacocotla’s shortwave frequency was a source of education with a mission to increase adult literacy rates in the region. Over the course of 50 years, the radio station evolved to a general community FM station with 10,000 watts frequency, morning news talk shows like Con Olar a Café (“With the Smell of Coffee”), and local reporting. At the time of writing this piece, the broadcast region of Radio Huayacocotla is recovering from the aftermath of Hurricane Grace, all of which Radio Huayacocotla is reporting on by sharing photos and updates on Facebook and on air. According to our team in Mexico, 26 communities have reported a loss of electricity, but battery-run radios keep audiences informed and connected to Radio Huayacocotla.
“All of us who work in the radio [station], a team of 15 people, have one foot in the station and the other in the communities,” shared one Radio Huayacocotla employee. “We also have correspondents, who are the voice of their peoples, who speak their languages. They are the ones who are setting the agenda for us according to their needs.”
Radio Huayacocotla and Population Media Center
After Population Media Center’s successful broadcast of Toma Mi Mano (“Take My Hand”) in Guatemala, the team at Radio Huayacocotla requested the rights to broadcast the popular show to their 600,000-person audience across seven Mexican states. The opportunity to blend the educational and community-focused mission of Radio Huayacocotla with PMC’s transformative storytelling was welcomed by PMC-Mexico Country Directory Cecilia Orvañanos.
“By partnering with Radio Huayacocotla, we’re inspiring entire regions to prioritize their health, their relationships, and their communities,” said Orvañanos. “And we’re doing all of this through storytelling, speaking directly to the hearts and minds of our listeners.”
Toma Mi Mano began airing five days a week on Radio Huayacocotla in June. In addition to the daily broadcast, listeners can call into the station and discuss the storylines and the topics addressed in the show – like the story of Esperanza, who is watching her granddaughter experience love and lust for the first time.
Huayacocotla Photo Gallery
Prior to the broadcast of Toma Mi Mano, our team toured Huayacocotla and the radio station. Below is a photo gallery of the visit, including beautiful murals, markets, landscapes, and more.