Dear Friends,

This year as we give thanks for the many blessings in our life, we at KBBF are grateful for the generosity, vision, and support of our members and donors. As we begin our 44th year as the first bilingual radio station in the US, with a transmitter on the top of Mt. St Helena, and a strong signal reaching some 5 million people, one million of whom are Spanish speakers; we have much to be proud of as well.

During the weeks in October of disastrous North Bay fires when telephone, Internet, and TV were inaccessible, our station was the Spanish speaking population’s only source for reliable information. For those two weeks of 16-hour live programming stretches, 12-hour stretches of service by volunteer staff, and hundreds of phone calls and visits from the community, we saw our station’s role suddenly expand and grow with the responsibility and necessity to transmit vital news and information to Spanish speaking listeners who turned to their trusted source of local and community information.

In addition, an increase in the diversity of our audience occurred as public officials, first responders, and community and public leaders turned out to relay messages and as other local radio stations linked with KBBF to have critical information translated into and broadcast in Spanish. During that frenzied and exhausting period, we also realized that while we did an excellent job with the volunteers and equipment at hand, we lacked many of the resources needed to properly and professionally carry out the task of emergency response.

During the fires, KBBF received thousands of phone calls asking where help was available. From these calls, we learned that the number of displaced Latinos had to be in the tens of thousands and also learned that not many Latino people were willing to make use of the emergency shelters that had been set up for those displaced by the fires. People were avoiding the shelters for various reasons, not the least of which was the presence of armed National Guard soldiers posted in front. Only after KBBF vouched that the shelters were safe from immigration enforcement did they feel it was safe to go to them. Clearly, the relationship that KBBF has established with the community was the only thing helping many Latinos feel confident enough to approach the authorities for help.

There is so much more we could do as a community radio station with your help! Please donate today and become a sustaining member of the leading voz de la comunidad by visiting our web site at kbbf.org

Thank you very much for your attention.

Alicia Sanchez

President, BBFI/KBBF Board of Directors

Caroline Bañuelos

Vice President, BBFI/KBBF Board of Directors

Michaele Morales

Secretary, BBFI/KBBF Board of Directors

Santos Molina

Treasurer, BBFI/KBBF Board of Directors

Alan Bloom

Chief Engineer, BBFI/KBBF Board of Directors

Lisa Maldonado

BBFI/KBBF Board of Directors

Alicia Roman

BBFI/KBBF Board of Directors

MaDonna Cruz

BBFI/KBBF Board of Directors

Albert Wahrhaftig

BBFI/KBBF Board of Directors

LINKS:

KBBF receives Philanthropy Award from Healthcare Foundation of Northern Sonoma County

Link: https://healthcarefoundation.net/2017/10/30/2017-healthcare-philanthropy-awards-luncheon/

Article by KQED News

Link: https://ww2.kqed.org/arts/2017/11/03/how-a-bilingual-radio-station-helped-the-undocumented-during-the-fires/

Video news piece by Splinter Media

Link: https://splinternews.com/a-bilingual-radio-station-has-become-a-lifeline-for-und-1819544309

(Note: this video was re-posted by journalist Jorge Ramos on Facebook and currently has close to 150,000 views)

KBBF’s blog post

Link: https://kbbf.org/kbbfs-disaster-response/

Alicia Sanchez interview with WORT 89.9 (Madison, WI)

Link: https://www.wortfm.org/kbbf-fm-in-bay-area-broadcasting-wildfire-news-for-latino-community/

BBC News interview with KBBF Programming Director Edgar Avila

Link: http://kbbf.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/BBC_News_Channel-2017-10-13_09-32-09.mp4