Spotlight on Carole Leuwe, 2016 George Atkins Communications Award Winner
Even before she started working in radio, Carole Leuwe used to listen to and closely follow presenters from different radio stations in the city of Douala. Passionate about radio, she knew her voice was going to be on a station’s airwaves one day. While pursuing her studies at the University of Dshang in western Cameroon, she got a job with Yemba Community Radio in 2002, just two weeks after starting an internship there.
After five years with Radio Yemba, her talent and devotion later took her to Bafoussam in western Cameroon, where she joined Radio Star’s team as a reporter and presenter. She also hosted a farmer program called FertiVert. She recalls: “The interesting part is that we scheduled it because there was a sponsor who wanted their pesticides sold. But over time, we understood that farmers liked the program because we used to give them tips on how to manage their tomatoes, how to work with their cabbage, and how to produce potatoes. This program ran for 30 minutes, three times a week, in the evenings. It was one of the flagship programs of the station.”
After a time, the manager of Radio Star offered her the position of Director of Programs. She says, “It was at that point that I started to take my work more seriously as the career I was going to pursue to this day.”
A few years later, she joined Radio Nostalgie as the news editor. In addition to her current duties with 96 FM (formerly known as Radio Nostalgie), Mrs. Leuwe is a committed defender of the rights of children, women, and people with disabilities.
At Radio Nostalgie, she hosts programs on culture and health, but farming remains her real passion. Mrs. Leuwe says that it was during her years at Radio Yemba that she learned that it was important to broadcast tips that would address farmers’ needs in their local languages. But her bosses at Radio Nostalgie didn’t see the importance of airing a program dedicated to farming. So she decided to get creative and take advantage of her program on health to broadcast farming messages.
Eventually she was able to convince her managers by telling them that she was one of the proud recipients of the George Atkins Communications Award. Her pride was more than symbolic. Thanks to this award, Mrs. Leuwe succeeded in convincing the managers of Radio 96 FM to dedicate a program to farmers who, according to Mrs. Leuwe, are an essential part of Cameroon’s future.
So, since September 2016, the 96 FM program schedule has included a farmer program called Agri 237. The program currently broadcasts farmer advice to listeners.
Congratulations, Carole Leuwe!