This project was built from the ground up and the people that work there are local volunteers that constructed everything. Amazingly enough, some of them were volunteers for Voluntario Global in the past. The construction of the space took a year, and the radio station began its programming in March 2016. Since the State does not normally intervene in this area, there is a lack of infrastructure. However, to the people of the community, the radio station symbolizes hope. There are only a few schools in the area and one health center, although there should be one for each neighborhood. The lack of resources also results in health problems due to lack of hygiene and the quantity of garbage. A lot of young people that have neither a disposable income nor access to education are exposed to drug abuse and violence, which increases the insecurity and the isolation of this zone. The reality and outcome of all of this combined are that the police, taxis, and ambulances refuse to come into the area.
Although it's a difficult task, local organizations work on improving their living conditions in any way they can because their local government does not take into consideration the actual necessities of comfortable living when setting up these urbanization projects. "El Hormiguero" is one of the organizations that sprung into life from this endeavor. It is one of the groups that help in educating and organizing the population to improve its standard of living through various activities, fighting for its social rights. They provide school support, host meetings, and are the creators of the radio station.
The radio operates from Monday through Saturday, broadcasting one or two programs per day, with music playing the rest of the time. They try to take into account the cultural wealth of the area and the mix between the communities that come from many different parts of Latin America. They are still working on improving it and are constantly learning new things about how to best run it. Because of this, the main role of the volunteers that work here will be to help them with the most technical parts, such as the operation. However, volunteers will also be able to organize new programs to add to the roster. Volunteers will also help with social communication by going to the neighborhoods to interview local inhabitants and thinking about how to best manage social handles and develop advertising strategies for the radio.
What can you learn as a volunteer?
The purpose of this place is to transmit information and to also entertain and educate people. To this end, the radio station broadcasts regular programs each day of the week that deal with various subjects about the news and social rights, comparing the viewpoints during debates with people from the area or other communities. The volunteers, thus, have an important function because they can exchange and give their opinions about current issues, with a different point of view and by sharing their own culture with the locals. It is also the perfect place to learn about the political, economic, and social situation of Argentina and to improve their level of Spanish. Finally, it is an opportunity for the volunteer to learn the basics of how a radio station works and know more about the means of communication in general, and in Argentina.
Long term volunteers can apply for a soft skills certificate from GLORE, a Project from the EU. You can choose up to 5 skills to certificate according to your experience and will.
These are the soft skills that communication volunteers are most likely to develop during the volunteer period:
- Comm and Active Listening
- Critical Thinking
- Decision Making
- Digital Communication
- Ethics and Work Commitment
- Multicultural Awareness
- Public Speaking
- Self Awareness
- Team Work
Location and first day at work
This radio station is located in Villa Soldati, more specifically, in Barrio Fatima. As it is in the suburb of Buenos Aires, it can only be reached using buses or what they call the "premetro". Your first week will be dedicated to observing and asking questions to consolidate the information you have so that you can integrate yourself fully into your specific tasks.
Monday through Saturday afternoons. This project is available all year round.
- Valid Passport & Visa: Most travelers do not need a visa to enter Argentina. Volunteers enter the country as tourists and can stay for up to 90 days. Extensions on visas are possible; our coordinators will advise you on this process.
- Medical Insurance: Voluntario Global requires the volunteer to have adequate medical insurance for the duration of the program and must be provided with details of such insurance coverage at the time of confirming their placement.
- Spanish Level Required: Advanced (C1 – C2)
- Minimum Stay: 4 weeks