Help launch FM Baobabs in Dakar, Senegal

Assane Diallo is the director of the John F Kennedy Center, an international education nonprofit based in Seattle. He's getting ready to help launch FM Baobabs, a new community radio station serving Dakar. The new station, staffed by local volunteers, will broadcast local and international news and educational programming in several languages. (see the station's complete prospectus for details).

While funding for the project has largely been secured, FM Baobabs is seeking equipment donations. If your station can part with spare parts from the below wish list, please consider donating to the cause. Assane plans to ship equipment to Dakar (from Seattle) in January 07. Contact Assane at adiallo@jfksn.org if you or your station is able to help!

FM Baobabs equipment wish list:

(1) On air mixing console
(4) Broadcast microphone
(4) Heavy duty poise arm microphone stand c/w wiring
(2) CD player
(1) Two desk cassette machine with individual input and output
(1) Mini disk recorder/player system
(1) Telephone hybrid
(1) R.A.G. light control units
(2) R.A.G. light display units
(1) Digital studio clock with time code control
(1) Monitor power amplifier
(2) Playback monitor loudspeaker
(2) Transmitter
(1) Antenna, Cable + ACC
(1) Limiter-compressor
(1) Field recording kid
(1) Set of studio furniture
(1) Headphone distribution amplifier
(3) Headphones complete with cable and connector

Be very careful with this organization.

I would want to warn people who might consider contributing to this organization. My wife and I traveled to Dakar to teach English with the JFK Center and encountered enormous difficulty with the organization. In a nutshell, the programs described on the website bear little to no resemblance to anything actually happening in Dakar. Mr. Diallo seems to write elaborate descriptions from his home in Seattle and solicit funds for projects, largely unconnected with anything concrete in Dakar.

We were in Dakar from November 2005 through June 2006. Assane spoke to me before going there about the possibility of creating a radio station, but nobody I ever spoke to in Dakar mentioned it.

Before contributing, I would recommend that one be in contact not only with Mr. Diallo, but other people in Dakar who might verify what is and what is not happening there. That is to say, we found very quickly that what Assane says is happening in Senegal and what actually is happening are two very different things.

To pay for our stay my wife and I contributed a healthy sum to JFK. Assane said in February that he would refund our money not used for rent. He has not yet followed through on this commitment, and, after much discussion with him to express the seriousness with which we took his committment, we initiated legal proceedings against him. Thus far, despite great efforts by our lawyer, he has refunded nothing.

I wrote a lengthy description of our stay and difficulties with JFK which can be read at:

http://www.jfkcenterproblems.net/

Bill Foreman
foreman.b@hotmail.com

The media's job is to interest the public in the public interest. -John Dewey