Loy9: a youth show grows up

Interactive Team Manager

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Loy9 team - Anni and Pheap in front row

Two out of three Cambodians are under 30, but most don’t know how to get involved in important decisions in their communities.

Loy9, a TV show, radio programme, online and mobile project which aims to change that, has passed its important first anniversary milestone.

Happy Anniversary to us!

Loy9 aims help young people in my country to access information about civic life and discover opportunities to in the world beyond their homes and schools.

We also hold live events around the country to make sure the audience across Cambodia gets to meet us. And when the TV series is on air, the radio show covers the same topic and usually shares the same guests.

I’ve been here since its launch and the first year has passed in just the blink of an eye.

So what has changed since it started?

Well, take Sophea, the live producer of the very first show. I would say he has grown up a whole lot. I remember he was quite nervous during the first show because, as the live producer, he always has to be super-flexible, calm and most importantly he must make sure that everything runs smoothly.

Loy9 studio, producer Sophea left

But it is worth it – you can see this from the satisfaction on Sophea’s face as he watches the famous Cambodian singer Pou Khlaing when he appeared as our special studio guest.

The audience loves it when we have famous stars on Loy9, and the celebrities are really supportive of our work to help youth in Cambodia get more involved. 

As for the two young presenters, Anni and Pheap have changed so much in the past year. They are so confident – no longer shocked when time is running out, or the guest talks too long, or even while a call is suddenly disconnected!

We all understand the pressure of doing a live show. So many things to talk about - so many headaches. But if you ask the team, I am confident that everyone will say they love what they have been through.

We do not yet know the exact number of people in our audience each week because there is no system for gathering those figures in Cambodia. We will do our own survey later this year.  

But what we do know is at least 2300 callers called this one hour weekly show between January 2012 and January 2013. Many of them were able to tell us what they thought and also what was happening in their daily lives in relation to the topics of the show.

We had just over 60 guest speakers during the first year – and each put a smile on our faces. People might think they were just people who happened to come to talk but actually they were selected and considered very carefully by the live producer each week from several possible options.

As a Cambodian and a BBC programme maker, the Loy9 radio show has made me proud! I am glad that I get to serve my people by entertaining them and making them think and learn more about meaningful youth participation.

Many of the young people in my country do not get the chance to help develop this country. There were also times when we felt that making the show was too difficult. But we are doing what we love and this is what brings us back with a smile, ready to face the new day.

Elsewhere on BBC Media Action

Find out more about the Loy9 project

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