Nick N1IC – How to Save Ham Radio – Part 2 – Pay it Forward (5 Part Series)
Thanks for all the feedback on the first part of my conversational view of how to Save Ham Radio. Now I know “SAVE” is a strong word and it’s not that we are “IN TROUBLE” but it’s always good to do some self-refection on the hobby from time to time.
Pay it forward is a simple concept – do something that will have in impact on others and help to do it for the next person.
How does that work for us being Hams? Well, I have thought of a few things but would love to hear your comments on things I might have missed:
- Operate – Actually use all that gear you have. When you do talk to someone new or get out of the normal net you’re in or circle that you always talk too. Sometimes talking to someone new will provide you a new view on the world, topic or life. You could even learn something!
I hear from new Ham’s as well as have experienced it myself – I got my license, my rig, antennas up and I get on the air and no one comes back to me. Or they are talking to people and are rude if I want to join in.
The other thing that I find these days is even local 2m/440 mhz drive time on our local repeaters are very quiet… I’m not sure why. Get out talk or whatever mode your interested in… meet someone new!
- Teach – Become an Elmer or just buy a copy of the Getting your Tech License book and pass it around. I have purchased about 5 copies over the years and my only ask from people that I give them to is send me a note when your get your license and please pass it along to someone new. Buy a copy for the local Scout Master or other organizations in your area. If you don’t have the $20 find a few hams in your area to chip in. This is a great investment trust me. I had a copy come back to me in the mail form someone 5 people away and found it it was my copy and USPSed it back to me.
There are many places around that you could sign up to be an Elmer as well. I know eham.net has a forum for Elmers… you get the picture.
- Get out into forums and post – answer questions, help, teach and share. Radio Reference.com, QRZ.com and Eham.net just to name a few but you easily could become a person of authority and share. I know there are a lot of people out there that complain or are even not very nice in forums… Just let the Internet tough guys go and help those that need help.
- Have old equipment? Donate it to any of the great orgs out there that are looking for gear. Even better have a contest with your local club or scouts or computer club. First person to get their license gets my old Icom 2m Rig. Have some fun with it…. Challenge everyone in your club to throw in $10 and buy a rig to give it way. There are so many easy ways to pay it forward with gear I’m sure you could think more let me know. I remember the Kenwood TR-2600 that was given to me J I wish I still had that rig but it got me to upgrade from Novice to Tech so I could get on 2M a the time.
Those are just some quick ideas – get your thinking cap on too on how to pay it forward. Have a Station Tour if you have a great station to show off – present to a computer club, electronics class or whatever is around your area. Talk at a local CERT meeting… you has so much knowledge; experience and passion for this hobby just take some time to share it.
Share a Getting your Tech book or best yet talk to someone new… biggest complaint I hear from new Hams is the fact that no one answers them or they are not inclusive. Remember you were the new guy/gal once… make them feel welcome!
What is your pay it forward idea???