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Loyola Productions in Zambia

Friday 11 March 2016, by SIGNIS

Lusaka, March, 11th, 2016 (Canaafrica). Loyola Productions, owned by Jesuits, is a well-known Catholic media production house in various countries. In Zambia, the founder is Father Charles Chilinda, SJ. He founded it because, he said, “he felt the absence of the Catholic Church in the media especially television”.

When Fr. Chilinda studied in Los Angeles, he discovered Loyola Productions. With other students, from Germany and Italy, they decided to start Loyola Productions in their countries.

In 2004, when he returned in Zambia, Fr. Chilinda shared his idea with his Provincial Superior, and started the process. It was not easy, because they did not have a lot of money nor equipment.

The first production was for the Bambino Sisters. But the biggest opportunity came with a project with the Barclays Bank. “Barclays Bank had a project called Miles Ahead and they were going from England through all the countries where Barclays had branches; from Kenya then Tanzania and into Zambia. We followed this team when they entered Zambia and covered their events up to the time that they left. We filmed them and edited all that so that each day there was something on national television,” Fr. Chilinda recalled.

The project was a big success, and with a high quality. After this project, people started consulting about Loyola Productions .

Ever since, “Loyola Productions has grown and has managed to produce regular programs for the national television, thereby putting a Catholic Church presence in media space dominated by evangelicals. Famed for its quality productions, Loyola Productions has earned credibility from the government, NGOs as well as the private sector.”

“We’ve worked on social projects with the telephone companies, the mines, the NGOs, health sector, development, tourism and that way we’ve been all round doing social advocacy in issues that people deal with in day today life,” Fr. Chilinda said. “Right now we are in the process of producing a documentary on gender-based violence and its ugly nature and what the government is doing to address this issue. Every week we do a health-based program and I think there is no area that we have not covered.”

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