WHO ARE WE?
Early in 2011, a very small group of Bell Island residents embraced a Community Radio Project being offered by The Rural Secretariat, a division of the Government of Newfoundland & Labrador. On March 14, 2011, Radio Bell Island emerged with a one-week special event broadcast. The results of this event were truly incredible to behold. The Community came alive with students working alongside adults to create unique, locally produced programming. The entire town tuned in to listen to their friends and neighbors tell stories, read the news, play quiz shows, perform music, and interview the local law enforcement. A sense of community pride and connectedness emerged.
As one elderly resident said appreciatively during a phone-in program;
"I haven't had this many Bell Islanders in my kitchen in 40 years". Such was the success of Radio Bell Island that a Committee was struck with the mandate of establishing a permanent radio station. RBI was incorporated and a second special event broadcast was undertaken in March 2012, more popular and successful than the first. Radio Bell Island was subsequently approved by Industry Canada and licensed by the CRTC following a Public Hearing in Ottawa on July 18, 2012. A fundraising campaign netted over $11,000 which was used, along with a grant from Rural Development, to purchase necessary broadcast equipment and build a Radio Station at St. Michael's Regional High School. CJBI Radio Bell Island 93.9 FM began broadcasting as a permanent station on Jan. 28, 2013. The studio is now operating in the town hall building on Bell Island