Project TUPA was created by Free Radio Berkeley to empower indigenous, campesino and barrio communities in the Americas with the tools, technology, knowledge and skills to build and maintain their own community broadcast stations. Project TUPA (Transmitters Uniting the Peoples of the Americas) is a non-profit project under the fiscal sponsorship of Global Exchange in San Francisco, California.

Even though 70 percent of the population in South America live under nominally left of center governments, much of the broadcast media is under the control of media conglomerates - unbridled cheerleaders for neo-liberal policies and vehement opponents of popular movements for grass roots democracy. Indigenous, campesino and barrio communities lack the resources to effectively counter the private media outlets. Communication is a fundamental, inalienable human right. Empowering local communities with low cost broadcast stations, gives a voice to people who are otherwise totally cut off from any other means of communication they can control and speak to one another with.

Project TUPA needs your financial support to equip communities throughout Latin America with their own broadcast stations. Project TUPA offers four to five day radio camps that teach people how to build an FM broadcast transmitter and set up a radio station through direct hands-on learning. Workshop, participants are able to walk away with an assembled 40-watt transmitter and necessary equipment to create a community broadcast station capable of covering an area up to 8-10 miles in radius.

Unlike electoral campaigns and lobbying efforts, donations to Project TUPA produce concrete and tangible results at relatively low cost. A complete FM broadcast station can be placed on the air for less than $2000. The money spent to broadcast one political ad or place a one page spread in a major newspaper in the U.S. would be sufficient to create dozens of such small stations. For $10,000, a 4-5 day radio camp training session can be conducted in any given country, leading to the establishment of ten entry level 40-watt radio stations at an average cost of $700 to $1000 per station.

Project TUPA recognizes and supports the struggles of the peoples of the Americas for a decent standard of living, an end to environmental devastation and destruction, social justice, political autonomy, grassroots democracy, control of natural resources and the preservation of indigenous cultures.

Throughout Latin America popular movements are rising to reject the failed policies of neo-liberalism and create fair, just and equitable societies based on grassroots democracy and sovereign control of natural resources. A very critical period exists between now and the latter half of 2006, when elections are scheduled to take place throughout Latin America. Expanding community media resources is an essential task, especially now within this window of impending elections.

Your contribution to Project TUPA will assist the peoples of the Americas in establishing grassroots democracy by creating and controlling their own forms of media expression. Click on the donation link. All contributions are tax-deductable.

You may also request a Project TUPA DVD made possible by funding from the San Francisco Foundation. The TUPA video is also available as a streaming video in the following formats:

Real Video (256K stream, DSL or Cable connections only)
click here (rtsp:// There are about 55 seconds of black at the start.

Windows Media -
click here (

Quicktime (256K stream, DSL or Cable connections only)
click here (rtsp://

    Project TUPA
    Free Radio Berkeley
    1442A Walnut St., Suite 406
    Berkeley, CA 94709

    email: freeradio(at)riseup(dot)net

    This page in Spanish / Esta página en español

    This page in Portuguese

    This page in French

    Project TUPA Newsletter for 2006 (4.3 mb pdf)