Harlesden: Bang Radio appeals for help for training bid

Community radio station are calling on the public to help them win a �50,000 grant

A community radio station in financial dire straights is urging residents to vote for them to win a �50,000 grant to keep their out-reach training programme afloat.

Bang radio, based in Harlesden, has been shortlisted for the National Lottery’s People’s Millions fund, which awards money to community project voted for by the public.

If they win, the station will launch Bang Talent, which will train youngsters in making and producing music.

Helen Beesly, Bang’s operations director, said that if they lose out on the money the whole future of their training programme could be in serious doubt.

She said: “We are in financial jeopardy. We have already scaled back the training we deliver and if don’t win this we may have to scale our work back further.

“This money is really crucial to the continuation of Bang.”

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Bang Radio specialises in running music and media training classes for so called neets, youngsters not in education, employment or training, and it has won plaudits for engaging people other organisations have difficulty reaching.

One of those who has benefited from this training is 18-year-old Chateelah Green, from Salusbury Road, Queen’s Park, who credits the training she got at Bang with turning her life around.

A year ago she had dropped out of Kingsbury High School, where she had been studying her AS Levels, and was out of work.

Now she has gained her City and Guilds Level 2 qualification in music and radio production, and literacy, and works as a production assistant the station.

She said: “I didn’t like to be at school in the class room all day every day. With Bang they made it fun. We got to go into the studio, work with the DJs and experience things for ourselves.

“I got a lot more from it than I did from sixth form.”

Six months after she first walked into Bang’s offices, at the corner of Manor Park Road and Station Road in Harlesden, Chateelah says her confidence and skills have soared.

“Now I am a very confident person and I can talk to anybody. But I wasn’t like that before, I wouldn’t talk to people I didn’t know. Now I can feel comfortable.”

Voting for the grant is open from 9am until midnight on November 24. For more details about how to vote visit www.bangradio.fm