Radio Victoria Needs Your Help!

This morning we received a disturbing letter (see letter below) from our friends at Radio Victoria. As we have posted over the past few months, the Radio and its team of journalists continue to receive threats. While those responsible seem to be increasing the pressure, the police and government officials responsible for ensuring public safety and investigating these crimes continue to do nothing.

It’s seldom that we use this blog to make a financial appeal, but our friends at the Radio need your support, and a lot of it. Civil society is not strong in El Salvador – for generations corrupt politicians and organized criminals have used threats and violence to squash the voice of the people so they can engage in criminal activities with impunity and maintain their political power. In the struggle for justice and democracy in El Salvaodr, Radio Victoria is at the epicenter and we in the international community must continue to support them.

Voices on the Border will contribute what we can and we ask you to do the same. There are several easy ways to donate.

The fastest is to click on the Donate Now button to the right of this article and donate through Voices – we will send 100% of your contribution to the Radio (please state that you are donating to the Radio). We use Network for Good, which has the lowest fees (pennies) of any online payment service that we have found, and all donations are tax deductible, of course.

You may also donate through International Partners, just go to their website and click on donate now, which will take you to a Pay-pal site.  You may also send a check made payable to International Partners, 1320 Fenwick Lane, suite 400, Silver Spring, MD 20910. Or you can send a check directly to Radio Victoria (made payable to Radio Victoria). Mail it to: Wendy Wallas/ARPAS, Pasaje El Rosal #117, Colonia Miramonte Pte., San Salvador, El Salvador.

In addition to financial support, the Radio is asking you to call the station to record a message of support that they can then use on-air. This is another way to let those who are threatening them that the international community is watching and that we are demanding an end to impunity and injustice. It is an international call, so dial 011-503-2-389-3093. That is the number to the Radio’s news studio. Just tell them that you want to record a message of support and they’ll take care of it.

The journalists at Radio Victoria have put their lives on the line to stand up for civil society, freedom of speech, and justice. Other than writing emails and make phone calls to Salvadoran officials they have never asked for a thing. Let’s support them now!

Here is the text of the letter we received this morning:

Hello Friends

I just want you all to know that the situation in our community station Radio Victoria continues with problems, pressure, tension and a lot of worry.

During the last 3 days Radio Victoria workers have received another death threat on a cell phone, different forms of intimidation like luxury 4 wheel drive cars repeatedly driving around communities and asking where certain radio workers live, harassment of family members, people visiting homes of radio workers and asking for unknown people, unfounded comments like gossip, unusual noises at night outside workers´homes and strange tattooed youth wandering around close to workers´ houses.

All of this has our spirits plummeting and many Radio team members suffering from a delicate state of mind.

We are taking steps to insure the security of our Radio workers and of our building which as always implies many things: resources, transporting people, cell phone cards, changes in our infrastructure among others.

We feel we can no long have confidence in, or count on, authorities here and that we must take steps ourselves.

We are trying to get Marixela and her 3 year old daughter out of the country to Ecuador where Elvis, father and husband, is on an internship. Marixela and her daughter have directly received death threats and are under an intense emotional stress.

At the same time we want to guarantee the safety of all Radio members and of our building.

WE ARE ASKING FOR 2 FORMS OF SUPPORT:

  • recorded voice messages expressing support for the Radio and denouncing the death threats and the lack of response by local authorities. This will help boost our morale and also show the breadth of support we have from different organizations in different parts of the world.
  • economic support for the immediate needs we are facing which are shown below:

MARIXELA AND DAUGHTER’S TRIP TO ECUADOR AND EXPENSES DURING 3 MONTHS AND ELVIS’S CONTINUED STAY FOR 2 MORE MONTHS:

  • 2 airplane tickets…………………………………………………………..$ 2,400.00
  • airport taxes………………………………………………………………….       80.00
  • rent for 2 months (one month is already covered for Elvis)……..  600.00
  • food and personal needs for (3 months-Marix, 2-Elvis)………….2,500.00
  • transportation for 3 months………………………………………………..   300.00
  • health or other emergencies………………………………………………   200.00

                                                   TOTAL………………. $ 6,080.00

IT IS POSSIBLE THAT REPORTERS WITHOUT BORDERS WILL COVER MARIXELA AND HER DAUGHTER’S PLANE TICKETS AND THAT ALER (Latin American Radiofonic Education Association) WILL COVER THE COST OF RENT SO THE TOTAL SUM COULD BE: $3,080.00.

SAFETY FOR RADIO VICTORIA WORKERS’ FOR 6 MONTHS:

  • security cameras………………………………………………… $    950.00
  • personal protectors …………………………………………….    4,200.00
  • resources to guarantee safety………………………………     2,100.00
  • transportation, telephones & legal costs…………………        800.00

                                                  TOTAL……….. $ 8,050.00

*******************************************************************************************
HOW TO MAKE DONATIONS TO RADIO VICTORIA:

1)  SEND CHECKS DIRECTLY TO RADIO VICTORIA:

Mail your checks made out to Radio Victoria (or Wendy Wallas) to:
Wendy Wallas / ARPAS
Pasaje El Rosal # 117
Colonia Miramonte Pte.
San Salvador, El Salvador

2 )  PAYPAL WITH A CREDIT CARD:

1 – Go to International Partners’ website:  http://www.internationalpartners.org <http://www.internationalpartners.org/>      and click on “Donate Funds”

2 – Look under “Step 2: Choose your method of payment” – click where it says  “Donate by credit card using Paypal”

3 – Where it says “Designation” use the drop down window and choose Project and in the next window where it says “Name” put “Radio Victoria”

3)  FOR TAX DEDUCTIBLE CHECKS:

Mail your check made out to International Partners WITH RADIO VICTORIA ON THE SUBJECT LINE and send to :
International Partners
1320 Fenwick Lane
Suite 400
Silver Spring, Maryland 20910

AND PLEASE LET ME KNOW WHEN YOU SEND THE CHECK OR DONATION AND THE AMOUNT SO THE RADIO CAN KEEP A RECORD, THANKS SO MUCH, SEND INFORMATION TO:   cstarr.ww@gmail.com <mailto:cstarr.ww@gmail.com>

mil gracias, your support is greatly appreciated!!!

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One thought on “Radio Victoria Needs Your Help!

  1. Pingback: More on Radio Victoria « Voices from El Salvador’s Weblog

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