The Role of religious broadcasting in evangelizing in Kenya :a case study of Radio Waumini 88.5 F.M
This study sought to access the role of religious broadcasting in Kenya, a case study of Radio Waumini 88.5 FM. It is a Catholic radio station that broadcasts from Nairobi. It was launched on July 6th, 2003 as an instrument of evangelization and promotion of all initiatives and activities of the Catholic Church in Kenya. The study was prompted by the fact that previous mass media research in Kenya has mainly focused on audience trends and popularity of radio stations. Audience study remains relatively unexplored.Hence, the need to study audience station preference to Radio Waumini in relation to their uses and gratifications. The specific objectives of the study were to establish the demographics of the station's audience in relation to their uses and gratification and to establish whether the station plays a spiritual role in the lives of the audience, as stated in its mission statement.The study is a survey in which questionnaires were administered to a sample of 20 respondents,selected at random from 2 Catholic Churches within Nairobi. The information that was collected was analyzed using the SPSS statistical data analysis method. One major finding of the study was that most respondents were female and below 25 years. The majority were Catholics, who attended church regularly and were members of various church groups. The majority listened to the radio station at home.The second major finding was respondents tuned to Radio Waumini for news, information on social issues and entertainment. 60% of the respondents reported that the religious programs strengthened their spirituality. The respondents also listened to Christian music on other Christian FM stations. The study concluded that religious broadcasting does playa role in the audience's lives. Radio Waumini has been embraced by some members of the Catholic fraternity and is filling the spiritual gap in their lives. Many respondents reported that the station reinforced and strengthened their beliefs, though not satisfactorily. Radio Waumini has thus succeeded in upholding its mission statement. The main recommendation is that Radio Waumini needs to enhance its role as an evangelizing tool.Many respondents were not fully satisfied with their programs. Hence, a review of Radio Waumini programming is recommended. The respondents suggested better selection of music, more non-Catholic music, more interactive programmes and more business news. Topics that Radio Waumini is not covering satisfactorily, include, women and youth issues, Bible teachings, catechism and issues on the disabled. This research was exploratory; hence more study needs to be done on the subject itself. A comparative study of Radio Waumini, (Catholic radio station) and a non Catholic radio station would add more knowledge to the subject. At the moment, Radio Waumini is the only Catholic Radio station. The rest are non catholic, with one being a Muslim radio station.