It all began like a wild dream in the mind and heart of a young, blind boy called Reuben Kigame, who desired to be a radio presenter right from when he was about ten years old. The day of inspiration was an afternoon when Reuben was in 3rd Grade. The Voice Of Kenya (VOK) had visited Kibos School for the Blind where he went and given a chance to him and the other children to appear on a recording that was then aired a few days after. Later, VOK which was renamed Kenya Broadcasting Corporation (KBC), would look for Reuben among his fellow High School students to share music or give a sermon during the station's inspirational programmes.
In 1986, during Reuben’s final year at High school, the VOK recorded a sermon at the High School for the Blind on "Real Peace" that was to be aired on the national English Service. Many began to notice the unusual depth, clarity and eloquence in this young man and his appeal in communication. One of his close friends, Mr. Imbumi Makuku, was to tell him later that he had a great gift in communication and later began to expose him to the media following that sermon. Reuben's exposure to the media grew with his invitation to participate in the Joy Bringers Family Show and the musical household show called Sing and Shine.
In the 1990s, Reuben appeared severally on KBC, TransWorld Radio and the Far East Broadcasting Association (FEBA) programmes. When the media was liberalized, it is no wonder that Reuben began to debut his own pre-recorded programmes with Sayare Radio and Television. His first major breakthrough was a WTM recording called "Come Let Us Reason," a half hour Apologetics show that grew to a great popularity. He then ventured into a Luhyia broadcast on the same station which he titled, "Inzira Yobwatoto," (The Way of Truth.)
Radio Citizen was to discover Reuben at the end of the year 2000. He had been assisting the young Radio Citizen in developing station ID jingles and they loved them. He was then asked to do a show at the young station which he called, "Sunset." Is it any wonder that the evening drive-time show on Fish FM is called "Sunset?" At Radio Citizen, Reuben's show became a darling of the evening crowd. With the assistance of Mr. Maloba (aka Papa Nasty), Reuben's talent began to shine in radio.
In April 2001, Mr. Leo Slingerland of Family Media called Reuben to take up a presenter position at Family FM (now Radio 316). He was asked to do the Family Matters programme. Here, again Reuben distinguished himself as a talented presenter. While at Family FM, Reuben asked Mr. Slingerland if he could introduce a country and Western programme on the station over the weekend. Mr. Slingerland obliged and so was born Country Mile! Is it any wonder that there is Country Mile on Fish FM? The programme debuted on Sunday afternoons but became so popular that it was extended to Saturday evening as well. Later, when working with Hope FM, Reuben took the show with him and renamed it God's Country. At Hope FM, Reuben helped shaped the programming in the company of David Makuyu, the pastorate and colleagues. With the support of his technical assistant, Mr. Jackson Onchwari, Reuben became a household name with the programme Heart to Heart, an evening talk show. Is it any wonder that the evenings at Fish FM are really a talk show time?
Reuben has lent a hand in shaping not just Sayare Radio, Radio Citizen and Family FM, but also Biblia Husema Broadcasting and Nairobi's big Christian station, Hope FM. he even volunteered for a time at Kameme FM. Before Biblia Husema started her Eldoret broadcasts, Reuben was consulted a great deal by the AIC Church for advice. In fact, in the year 2008-2009, the late radio guy of the AIC, Mr. Vic Paul and his team heavily engaged Mr. Kigame on the possible launch of an English station by the church. This consultation led to the birth of Truth FM, now broadcasting in Nairobi on 90.7.
We share this history to show you how the vision and apprenticeship of one determined man gave birth to the best radio station in Kenya, viz, Fish FM. Mr. Reuben Kigame is someone who does not give up easily. Having applied for an FM broadcast license early 2000, he was put off several times and given many false promises by the government. With great persistence, the permit to broadcast came in January of 2005 and a frequency assigned to his ministry, Word of Truth Ministries (WTM) in October of the same year with more follow up.
Mr. Kigame began to set up Fish FM studios by faith as early as January 2005. It was all very simple: the use of containers and several make-shift rooms. He directed the fittings and soundproofing all by himself. He then proceeded to set up a room where layover staff could rest and then embarked on the rigorous task of building radio jingles and selecting the Fish FM music way before it happened. The containers had to be pushed physically to their locations on log rollers.
Through several events such as garage sales and related fundraisers locally and overseas, Reuben pushed the dream of Fish FM into existence. By June, 2006, everything was set, except Reuben did not have a transmitter and antennae to broadcast. He did what he could but people did not understand his vision. By end of July, he threw his hands in the air after days of fasting and praying with no transmitter in sight. He told his wife then, Mercy, "It is time to give up."
One statement from Mercy made Reuben take one more step" "Reuben, God cannot bring you this far only to leave you and abandon the vision of the station!"
When the signal finally went into the air on 19th August, 2006, merely to test, it was time to celebrate as that first song pierced the airwaves:
"Something so wonderful is in my heart today ... Celebrate and give God all the glory, He is worthy of our praise; Make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation, All creation give Him praise ..." sang the Oslo Gospel Choir!
We are on to this day despite the harsh environment and challenges. We prophetically continue to resound Psalm 97.1, wanting all the distant shores to hear the Good News.
In celebrating seven years of broadcasting, Fish FM has been rebranded to be more urban and to focus more on the younger generation. Her Tagline is now, “The Voice of Real Change!” Her desire is to see Godly change in posterity. Join Fish FM to make Christ known and to leave this world a better place.