Radio City aims to teach spoken English to 3 million street kids

MUMBAI:  In a first of its kind innovation, Radio City 91.1FM has partnered with cycle candy vendors to create pop-up English schools across Dharavi and like slum areas. Radio reaches more than 99% of India where approximately 30 million children live in slums. Candy vendors on bicycles who visit slum dwellings daily have been provided FM receivers and megaphones and have been incentivised to park their cycles in specific localities every week at a certain time.

During these time bands, Radio City 91.1FM is airing specially designed lessons on spoken English. Candy being a natural draw for the kids, all the vendors have to do is tune in to Radio City on their FM receivers at the designated time slot, play the on-air English lesson and hand out free candy to every kid who sits through it.

Initiated in the slums of Mumbai, the network looks to scale the program up to 10 cities to begin with.In a country where the knowledge of English is an economic enabler, Radio City looks to use their reach to broadcast primary lessons in spoken English.

Speaking about the initiative, Radio City 91.1FM CEo Abraham Thomas said, “Candy Class is an ambitious project and we have rolled out the first phase. Dharavi, as one of Mumbai’s largest slums, seemed to be the right place to start our efforts to give back to Mumbai in a special way under the ambit of Rag Rag Mein Daude City. Using the power and reach of radio to make a difference to the lives of these children might help them gather a lifeskill that they might not otherwise have been fortunate enough to get”.

Radio City has launched a promotional campaign to stimulate this initiative and will follow up with on-ground promotions and special activities for children conducted in slum settlements by radio jockeys and other personnel. The idea for Candy Class was developed in partnership with GREY group India and looks to impact 3,000,000 children nationally. ACORN Foundation India, affiliated to ACORN International, is partnering on the activity in order to help build a sustainable model to popularise and scale up this project in Dharavi.

“What’s really interesting is the way this initiative brings together the power of radio with the cycle candy vendors for a common purpose. Candy Class is not elaborate, does not require huge infrastructure and investments, yet is incredible when you consider the economic and social implications of speaking the language in a country such as ours”, opined Sandipan Bhattacharya, Chief Creative Officer, GREY group India.

Radio City 91.1 FM is a 100percent owned subsidiary of JagranPrakashan Ltd. Radio City 91.1 FM. India’s first & oldest FM brand has been synonymous with the category since its inception in 2001.  The station has ruled the airwaves, by being No.1 in Mumbai & Bangalore for over 451+ weeks and a consistent top-2 across all other operating markets, reaching out to over 2.2 crore listeners across the country. A pioneer with first on dial, first on web and first to microlocalise themselves, Radio City was the first to introduce humor on radio with BabberSher, first to launch agony aunt solving love problems with Love Guru, first to launch the biggest singing reality show in India with Radio City Super Singer, first ever FM station to recognize the independent singers & musicians with Radio City Freedom Awards and the first FM station to launch internet radio streams in India with 21 stations & counting!

With a reach across 39 of the most important towns of India, dominating the most important advertiser markets, for the fifth year in a row the brand has been ranked among the Top-25 brands to work for in India by the ‘Great Place to Work’ survey. Led strongly by the philosophy of Rag Rag Mein Daude City, the brand is firmly driven by the passion and the pride that listeners feel for it and associate it to. For further details, log on to

About GREY group India:

GREY group ranks among the largest global communications companies. Its parent company is WPP (NASDAQ:WPPGY). Under the banner of “GREY Famously Effective Since 1917,” the agency serves a blue-chip client roster of many of the world’s best known companies: Procter & Gamble, GlaxoSmithKline, Volvo, Britannia, ITC, Ferrero, Saint Gobain, Wipro, BIG, Dell, Adobe, Mondelez, to name a few. GREY was named ADWEEK’s “Global Agency of the Year” and AD AGE’s “Agency of the Year” in 2014. In Asia, Grey Group covers 28 cities in 16 countries, which includes Bengaluru, Gurgaon and Mumbai in India.

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