The Wild Woman’s Hour project (funded by Feast, Arts Council England, Cornwall County Council, the Skills Funding Agency, the European Social Fund and Cornwall Works) has provided an opportunity for many disadvantaged women in rural Cornwall to rebuild their self-esteem and develop the courage to speak up and speak out through the medium of a radio show, which they wrote and produced themselves.
From 2011-14 SLG, in association with Radio St Austell Bay, brought an exciting project to Mid Cornwall aimed at women and girls of all ages. A team of technical advisers, trained journalists and professional performers trained and mentored a group of women to become empowered in the process of producing their own monthly radio programme.
This project was particularly aimed at bringing together women who feel disadvantaged, undervalued or isolated, to enable them to express themselves, learn new skills and be part of something original and rewarding.
Since the first show in April 2011, Wild Woman’s Hour has become a multi-award winning show with regional and national acclaim. Jane McFadzean and The Wild Woman’s Hour Practitioner Team have been recognised as follows:
- Outstanding Digital Practitioner Award from the National Institute of Adult Continuing Education
- Learning Through Technology Project Award supported by the BBC
- The European Social Fund picked the Wild Woman’s Hour project for its best practice website
This project enabled 20 women to write, produce and present a monthly one-hour radio show on Radio St Austell Bay (based in Cornwall but with an international diaspora audience) and as a result of this outstanding success, a number of long-term unemployed women have found work and two women now manage their own radio show.
Being a part of the Wild Woman team is so rewarding on a personal level as it has allowed me to share my experience and knowledge with others while learning new skills and forming strong friendships that transcend the limits of the show. Through being involved in the show I have gained greatly in self-confidence to the extent that I now have my own solo show on the radio every week. Through being a Wild Woman and building my communication skills and self-esteem, my working life outside of the team has improved. I am now in employment within a customer facing role that before I would have found daunting.