Mayor Jeff Porter honored Everglades Amateur Radio Club by proclaiming the week of June 23-29, 2015 to be Amateur Radio Week in Homestead. Everglades Amateur Radio Club is not only a hobby for radio enthusiasts, but also collaborates with local emergency services during natural disasters or times of crisis when no other communications work. The Club is a member of the American Radio Relay League—a non- profit organization which provides technical advice and assistance to Amateur Radio enthusiasts and supports a number of educational programs throughout the country.
“Not many people are familiar with amateur radio,” said Mayor Jeff Porter about honoring the local group. “It contributed immensely to the City of Homestead during the historic devastation of Hurricane Andrew in 1992, and continuing through Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005, by providing emergency communications when other systems failed.”
Amateur Radio operators set up and operate organized communication networks locally for government and emergency officials, as well as non-commercial communication for citizens. Amateur Radio operators are most likely to be active after disasters that damage regular lines of communications due to power outages and destruction of telephone, cellular, and other infrastructure-dependent systems.
Stephen Taylor, President of the Everglades Amateur Radio Club, was proud to accept the Proclamation. “Our club is a group of folks that are interested in amateur radio. We talk to people all around the world and we focus mainly on keeping it as a hobby and using that hobby for emergency communication purposes.”
The most recent activity at Everglades Amateur Club was to communicate with outer space. The Club, along with 12 excited students from Richmond Heights Middle School, was able to communicate successfully with Italian astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti, currently working on the Futura mission and living in the International Space Station.
Taylor encourages people to come to the meetings on the second Friday of each month at 7:30 pm in the John D Campbell Agricultural Center (18710 SW 288th St, Homestead, FL 33030). The club is free and open to anyone who wants to learn more and participate in this timeless form of communication.
For more information, visit their website: www.arrl.org/Groups/view/everglades-amateur-radio-club or contact Taylor at firstname.lastname@example.org