UK Christian radio team to receive award for innovation

The radio programme production department at HCJB Global-UK is to receive an award from the National Religious Broadcasters of America (NRB) for their creative efforts.

The department, better known as Whistling Frog Productions, creates Christian radio programmes for a secular audience.

It will be presented with the 2011 NRB Media Award for International Innovation at the NRB’s 68th annual convention taking place in Nashville, Tennessee, from February 26 to March 1.

The award is given each year to an organisation based outside the US that “excels in innovative uses of electronic media in the proclamation of the gospel of Christ”.

NRB President Frank Wright said in a letter to the team that the decision to award Whistling Frog was based on a “thorough review” by the NRB International Committee.

HCJB Global President Wayne Pederson said: “Whistling Frog is not just a clever name. It represents some of the most engaging and unique radio spots I’ve heard. In our secular, post-Christian culture, it’s this kind of non-traditional creativity that will connect with people whose minds are far from God. I’m so impressed with the strategy and creativity of the Whistling Frog Productions team.”

HCJB Global-UK Director Colin Lowther said: “I suppose we could easily settle for placing our programmes onto Christian stations, but then the lost would never hear them.

“Instead, we push the doors of mainstream commercial radio stations and are often surprised at the welcome we receive.”

He said that the team “don’t do sermons or messages or Bible studies” but instead use secular music and themes to reach non-churchgoers.

“I would love to see lots of other Christian groups doing what we do,” he said.

“The opportunities are out there, but sadly, the Christian church often looks down on the mainstream media and sees them as a lost cause.

“In our experience they are certainly not a lost cause.”

Mr Lowther said the award was a wonderful confirmation of the team's vision to be the voice of Jesus "to those who just don’t want to hear from God".

He said: “Often the only way in is to ‘sneak up on them’ on their favourite radio stations.”