Sunday, 7 February 2010

[creative-radio] Western Australia's oldest Indigenous Radio Station faces an uncertain future


6WR Waringarri Radio 693AM - The Voice of the East Kimberley, Western

Waringarri Radio 6WR broadcasts the latest music, news, weather and
community information over a 300km radius in the remote East Kimberley
region of Far North Western Australia. Our powerful coverage includes
Kununurra, Wyndham, Warmun, Oombulgurri, El Questro, Argyle Mine and
Timber Creek.

RT @Northern_Clips: 6WR Waringarri Radio oldest #Aboriginal-owned
community #radio station in Western #Australia


The Voice of the East Kimberley now faces an uncertain future.

A lightning storm recently knocked out one of the four modules on the
5-kilowatt transmitter of Kununurra's 6WR Waringarri Radio in Western
Australia's northern Kimberley region.

But it didn't faze the station's manager Colin Cameron, a jack of all
trades in the radio business, who walked the 500m down the road to fix it

The storm was not enough to take "The Voice of the East Kimberley",
Western Australia's oldest indigenous radio station, off the air. But it
brought back memories for Mr Cameron, 73, of when the station's board had
called him in February 2002 when lighting had taken out the transmitter
completely and 6WR had been off the air for 47 days.

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The veteran radio broadcaster, manager and station owner quickly got the
station up and running again and the board soon asked him if he would like
to stay permanently.

"The station was in survival mode when I arrived, it needed tender loving
care," Mr Cameron said. More than eight years later and with the help of
dedicated presenters and local volunteers, 6WR continues to broadcast to
towns and remote communities in a 300km radius around Kununurra, including
Oombulgurri to the northwest, El Questro station to the south, and over
the border to Timber Creek in the Northern Territory.

There are also FM translators at the Argyle mine, Wyndham, Warmun and

Established in 1987, 6WR was the first Aboriginal-owned community radio
station in the Kimberley and continues to be the only station with its
studios and administration in Kununurra.

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