Syn Nation’s innovative national youth project

A new community digital radio channel, SYN Nation, run by young people, for young people, has been launched by Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull.

The service is being driven by young leaders based at community radio stations in Byron Bay, Canberra, Hobart, Melbourne, Warrnambool and Gippsland and has been developed by Melbourne-based community youth broadcaster SYN Media.

Launching the service, Malcolm Turnbull said: “Young people are at the forefront of new technology and SYN Nation is a great example of that. This project is innovative in the way it uses digital and online media and will help amplify the diverse voices of young people across this country.”

SYN GM Tahlia Azaria says since SYN Media launched in 2003 the station has heard consistently from young people in other parts of the country who wish they had access to the types of opportunities offered to young people in Melbourne.

“Now they can get involved without having to leave their town. Having access to a new technology in digital radio gives us an incredible opportunity to experiment and innovate. The goal is to keep expanding the service into new communities each year so any young person, wherever they may be, can be part of this national movement of young media-makers.”

The Community Broadcasting Foundation supported the project with a grant of $100,000, with matched funds from the Telstra Foundation, and further support from the Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation.    

CBF President Peter Batchelor is looking forward to watching the project develop as it gives young Australians a platform to be creative and experimental, to innovate and collaborate:

“Young people are the future of the community broadcasting sector. This project will nurture a network of young people who can take on leadership opportunities. On one level, SYN Nation will facilitate young people to tell their stories and create content for multiple delivery platforms, developing their skills as broadcasters and media-makers.  But the experience is also a formal development program for the next wave of community broadcasting leaders, and the participants will be supported by experienced mentors from the industry.

“Community broadcasting builds stronger, better-connected individuals and communities, and by investing in the next generation of community broadcasters, we are investing in the sustainability of our sector,” said Batchelor.    


The CBF is an independent non-profit funding agency which distributes funds to support Australian community broadcasting – a diverse sector with over 23,000 volunteers, and more than 500 licensed independent, community-owned and operated broadcasting services reaching audiences totalling over 5 million people weekly.


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