58 Birthday Celebration
On Friday, 10 February, Phalaphala FM continued to celebrate their 58th birthday with the elderly at their Thohoyandou studio, while well-known musician Colbert Mukwevho entertained their guests.
Ms Sharon Ravele, the station’s programme manager, said she felt humbled and grateful that their elderly listeners had shown up in their numbers to support them. “This drive was an eye opener, that we need to get out more and interact with our listeners. This way we are able to connect with them and understand their concerns and issues. This will position us to actually talk about real issues that our people are conversing about daily.”
She said that the 2023 birthday celebrations differed from the others, seeing that this year they had planned all the activities from a zero budget. “The station depended on sponsors for most of the things we needed, like accommodation, catering, etcetera. This year proved that our stakeholder management is working for the stations,” she said.
Phalaphala FM further plans to visit other areas around the Vhembe district and Gauteng as part of their 58th milestone. “Our aim is to engage with our listeners, show how much we appreciate their support and, in the process, build a much-needed emotional bond between our audience and the station. It may not have been instantly obvious, but the listeners were demonstrating their readiness to embrace what the station has ably and willingly embarked on - a drive to bring our listeners together,” Ravele said.
She also referred to the ease with which each presenter had interacted with the listeners and described it as a demonstration of social cohesion, which these giants of the airwaves espouse to drive. “As Phalaphala FM, we are eternally grateful for the spirit of synergy displayed during this event and the assistance we have been getting over the years during our outside broadcasts in different areas.”
Phalaphala FM wrapped up their 58th birthday celebration month with a live broadcast from the Christian Worship Church in Meadowlands, Gauteng, on Sunday, 26 February. The previous day, they broadcast from Palms Lodge at Tshiawelo from 07:00 until midnight.
The station’s programme manager, Ms Sharon Ravele, said that when the radio station had started, its mission had been to provide a vibrant community radio station that could act as a platform from which the wishes and aspirations of the listeners could be freely expressed, and to act as a source of education and information for the broader community of the area.
Ravele promised that the station would always take care of all its listeners and strive to make them happy. In celebrating their 58th anniversary on radio, they felt they should do something for their loyal clients, the listeners. “This station would not be what it is today without the listeners, and we brought them together to get to know each other. We tend to take what is dear to us for granted.”
She said the effectiveness of radio stations lay in the support they got from their stakeholders and the communities they served. “We wish to thank our local businesses, faith-based institutions and individuals. We are proud of our listeners as they continue to support our station and participate daily in our shows and events. We remain firm in being an endearing and friendly radio station that is always readily accessible, relevant, and a custodian of the Tshivenda language and culture, which we aim to preserve, promote and protect,” Ravele said.
Phalaphala FM visits Gauteng listeners
Phalaphala FM has invited its listeners to join its continuing birthday festivities at Tshiawelo in Gauteng on Saturday, 25 February. The station is celebrating its 58th anniversary on air this year.
The celebration started at the begging of this month, with visits undertaken to the Collins Chabane Municipal area and Thohoyandou. This Saturday, they will be broadcasting the Vhandilani show with Gvoice Nekhumbe live from 07:00 to 09:00, the Devhula Havhembe show with Mpho “Jantiby” Nefale from 18:00 to 21:00 and the Dikita show with Miss P from 21:00 to midnight.
Phalaphala FM’s programme manager, Ms Sharon Ravele, said that the station would be visiting its listeners in Gauteng to engage with them on a more personal level, thereby creating emotional bonds and building long-term relationships. This, she said, proves the station’s commitment to always striving to keep in line with the corporate vision of the SABC.
Ravele spoke about the station’s long-lasting endurance over the years. “From its early days in 1965, where the station shared a three-hour broadcast a day with the then Radio Tsonga (now Mhunganalonene FM), to a full 24-hour broadcast in 1978, the station has morphed to reflect the ever-changing landscape of the country and its listeners. We pride ourselves on our listeners as they keep on supporting our station and participate in our shows every day, as well as events organised. Our aim is to educate, preserve, promote, and protect the Tshivenda culture and customs. We will try to visit as many parts of our listeners’ footprints as we can to be closer to them, because we love them. The station is what it is today because of their unfailing support,” she said.