Ham radio is one of the most dependable forms of communications.. It is a vital link that has proved itself over and over in times of Crisis and emergencies.
When the phone goes out, as it does in many areas like Sooke and Thetis Island, It is the HAM radio operators that man the mic and get emergency messages through or just keep in touch with the out side world.
Cell phones, may seem like the wave of the future, but if there is no power, they go flat, or the system gets overloaded, it collapses.
But HAM radio the old standby is always there.
I helped with family reunification during the Kelowna . People were in different part of the area in reception centres, Families needed to get together, and distant relatives needed reassurance that their loved ones were safe.
For this reason we have “nets” Certain groups, at certain times will check in to a net controller.
This serves a number of purposes. We know who is on the net and where their signal can reach if called on for emergency, Our group are all retiree’s so it gives us sense of connection and a caring support group.
If someone has a radio problem, someone else will fix it We have the experience of centuries of learning to draw on.
Last Wednesday, it was t the Howard Johnson.
It is great to get the people together and match voice with person, to visit and to renew old friendships and start new ones.
For fun we have gift for the ladies and we have a door prize .
For many years , Allan Robson wood turned wonderful bowls. Health issues made it impossible for him to produce on of his master pieces this year, so Sheila Holliston VE7DAX and patty-anne Lea, VA7PTY, contributed gifts for the door prize.
Their names will always be read and they will always be remembered.
We also have a trophy that was donated by VE7QT. It goes each yer to a member who has served the club well.
Last year, it was stolen from a members car. Two members recreated the trophy and it was awarded to Ken Tomlinson.
We had to put a tone in our radios this year due to so much vocal traffic on the bandwiths.
Every radio seems to be different, but without a doubt, each is difficult. When you have a member in their 80’s and 90’s trying to work the buttons in one hand and the manual in the other, it can be a bit of a challenge.
So after the luncheon, the radio’s, computers, and screw drivers came out and member helped member to reprogram their radio.
The body may be weak, a walker or a wheel chair may impair mobility, but put a HAM behind a mic, and he or she is as efficient and has more experience than many of the emergency workers of today. And we don’t require parking spaces.
You can find more information on NEW HORIZON’S WEB PAGE
73’s till next time.