In these challenging times when there are growing concerns about the effects of social isolation on people living in lockdown, “Get on the air to care” encourages the 75,000 radio amateurs across the UK – as part of the 3,000,000 worldwide – to use their radio licences to chat and support each other across the airwaves.
Paul Devlin, NHS England Emergency Care Improvement Support Team says: “Get on the air to care (#GOTA2C) is designed to promote the emotional health and well being of licensed radio amateurs and short-wave listeners across the UK. Now, more than ever, we need to optimise all modes of communication to help reduce loneliness and isolation within
communities. Amateur radio provides a wonderful, unprecedented opportunity to help make this a reality”.
World Amateur Radio Day on Saturday 18 April celebrates this innovative, global community – amateur radio is the only technical hobby to be defined by international treaty. From its
early pioneers to the present day, it continually evolves to include technologies which are at the forefront of modern radio communications, yet radio amateurs can “Get on the air to
care” with a simple handheld device.
Steve Thomas, M1ACB, General Manager of the RSGB explains: “We have 500 affiliated amateur radio clubs and groups across the UK, many of whom have set up special club nights on the air so that their members can keep in touch whilst enjoying their shared interest. Volunteers from the RSGB’s National Radio Centre at Bletchley Park have arranged regular on-air ‘nets’ to keep in touch but visitors who had planned to visit are now joining them on the air. We want this campaign to inspire even more to get involved and also to use #GOTA2C when they share photos, videos and news of what they’re doing on social media.”
Ofcom, the UK radio spectrum regulator, is happy for radio amateurs to use /NHS after their call sign to show their appreciation for the fantastic work being done by the NHS.
Paul Devlin says: “GB1NHS, the UK’s National Health Service radio communications station, will be on the air as part of this campaign so listen out for it!”
For more information and our launch video: www.rsgb.org/gota2c