Amateur radio is a non-commercial form of radio communication. It's
   primary purpose is public service, to exchange ideas and to assist in
   technical development/experimentation, and to promote goodwill between
   Amateurs or "hams" as they are known, come from many different
   backgrounds; some are doctors, plumbers, astronauts, school kids,
   daycare workers, and police officers. Though their interests may vary,
   they are a close-knit community.
   Most of the time, amateurs use their radios for their own enjoyment.
   They pass messages and exchange ideas with others perhaps a few
   thousand miles away.
   Hams also provide the public with a service that often goes unsung.
   They have provided essential communications during earthquakes,
   floods, tornadoes, and hurricanes. They have assisted in search and
   rescue operations, and allowed families to contact their loved ones
   when all other forms of communication went down. Many times they have
   sent for emergency services personnel for accident victims needing
   roadside assistance.
   Most towns and cities have an amateur radio club, where members gather
   to socialize, plan exercises and events, and partake in ham radio
   related activities. Many clubs run classes to help aspiring amateurs
   obtain their license and others to upgrade. You will see them
   providing traffic control during parades and marathons, and they even
   assist the police patrolling the streets at Halloween.
   Last Updated: June 13th, 2000

Return to NRC Home Page