In the February-March 2012 issue of Canada's History, Joanna Dawson and Beverley Tallon enlightened us about seven Canadians who have made a difference (see page 59). As part of our Canadians and the World online extensions, we introduce you to Louise Atkins, the daughter of Farm Radio International Founder George Atkins, to talk about her Dad and his work in the developing world.
She describes how her father’s connection with radio and learning began early in life in rural Ontario. He helped found the Junior Farmers of Ontario Association in 1946, the start of a lifelong effort to improve the work and pride in farming as a profession.
Through his work as a CBC Farm Radio Broadcaster, Atkins travelled the world meeting with agricultural leaders and farmers. Through these connections he was inspired to create the Developing Countries Farm Radio Network, now Farm Radio International. The organization creates educational radio programs that are translated into local languages and shared in group settings around the world, not unlike the gatherings that George attended in the 1940s in Canada.
Before George passed away in 2009 he recorded this interview about the original iidea for the Farm Radio International network.