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Radio Movimiento seven years in the making

by: SUBMITTED - Volunteers and staff members of Radio Movimiento will celebrate the station's seventh anniversary Aug. 24.On Aug. 24, 95.9FM Radio Movimiento will celebrate its seventh anniversary.

KPCN-LP 95.9 FM is Oregon’s first union-operated and Latino community-control radio station. PCUN established the radio station on Aug. 20, 2006.

KPCN-LP 95.9 FM is exponentially expanding the diversity of voices participating in the Latino media in the Woodburn area. They include youth, indigenous people speaking in their own language, women, workers, plus progressive leaders from Latino communities around the corner and around Latin America. The majority of listeners are labor workers, housewives, high school students, kids and adults covering 300 square miles around Woodburn.

Aug. 18-20 of 2006 was the beginning of a great adventure; Radio Movimiento was made possible due to collaboration between the community, nonprofit organizations and Prometheus Radio Project. During two days, about 150 activists around the United States and about 100 supporters from the community “barnraised” Radio Movimiento.

In February 2007 we learned that a commercial radio KWLZ was seeking to move to the Portland area. KWLZ stood to increase its value by up to $20 million and if they moved their broadcasting from Central Oregon to West Linn it would eliminate 96.3 FM. Working with Michael Couzens and Gray Frierson Haertig, we reached an agreement to change our frequency to 95.9 FM.

Our technical engineer was able to redirect the antenna to the south which increased our frequency to some areas in Salem and Keizer with heavy Latino populations. Our antenna is located in the water tower in the city of Woodburn, allowing us to cover 300 square miles. In the five-mile radius 95.9 FM reaches the Latino population of about 20,000.

Radio Movimiento is a low-power community radio station which was created for the purpose of raising consciousness, educating, promoting culture and creating political awareness. It is also used as a tool to organize and mobilize the community. Radio Movimiento gives the opportunity and creates a space people in the community to express themselves. Its slogan says, “La Voz Del Pueblo” — The people’s voice. Radio Movimiento is mainly supported by volunteers who want to make a difference in the community in which they live.

Thanks to them, KPCN-LP 95.9 FM is the only radio station in the state of Oregon to produce programming in three different indigenous languages — Purepecha, Mixteco and Triqui — spoken by thousands of listeners. Radio Movimiento runs 24 hours a day, seven days a week and a total of 54 hours live programming. It is also streaming via Internet, Tune-In and podcasting all over the world.

Radio Movimiento will celebrate seven years in the making on Aug. 24 from 4 to 8 p.m. The event is open to the public will take place on the grounds of PCUN at 300 Young St. in Woodburn.There will be entertainment for the whole family, music and information on immigration reform and the new driver’s card in Oregon. Radio Movimiento will also be celebrating its volunteers, supporters and the whole community who make the station possible.