Sherrif Jawo (R) and Yana Herrala.

Radio UusJussi celebrates one year of broadcasting across the country.

Radio UusJussi, an online radio for immigrants located in Pori, is celebrating its first anniversary on air this year. Packed with programmes about culture, language and businesses, the radio emerged from the Multicultural Association of Satakunta with the objective of giving immigrants the opportunity to voice their opinions and express their culture.

“Information has always been flowing from one direction to the immigrants and most of them felt left out,” explains project coordinator Sherrif Jawo. “Through our programming we assist immigrants to easily integrate into their new home, Finland.”

Radio UusJussi’s programmes are in Finnish, English and Russian, but they also have one in Arabic from time to time. Their audience is mainly settled in Finland, but they also have listeners from Gambia (Jawo’s home country), Tanzania, Nicaragua, the United States, Russia and United Kingdom.

Jawo is especially interested in the feedback they receive from their listeners, which makes them improve their work. “It guides us and it’s always good to have a second or even a third opinion. We are always welcoming ideas from our listeners. If we think the idea is going to be helpful to people, then we start working on it.”

Radio UusJussi is funded mainly by the SOLID fund, a European Fund for the Integration of third country nationals, but they also receive funding from a number of different Finnish ministries, such as the Ministry of Culture.

Jawo and Yana Herrala are the only two workers at the online station, the rest of the team are volunteers. However, they are willing to expand the languages of their programmes some more.

“We are looking for a volunteer who speaks Spanish; it’d be great to have a programme in Spanish,” Jawo says.

Pilar Díaz