I finally received my Certificate of Authenticity from the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) governing body, which you may see attached to this article as a PDF file! I warn you though, it is quite a pretty document to behold :) Now I need to decide whether I should join a local WICEN chapter or not, as I've heard both good and bad things about such organizations. I'd love to get more involved in the local community and the idea of being involved with the local emergency services sounds thrilling, but not at the cost of being a potential burden either given that I'm quite physically disabled. Does anyone reading this article have any potential thoughts, maybe? It would be nice to hear them, thank you, as I'm honestly not sure how to proceed. WICEN define themselves as thusly:
WICEN consists of a number of state or territory based volunteer emergency communications service organisations whose members are primarily licensed amateur radio operators. Members are accredited to assist in emergency situations and are able to provide emergency and safety communications for other agencies when conventional communications networks fail or are inadequate. Emergency radio networks can be assembled quickly, taking advantage of both amateur radio frequencies and services and licenced non-amateur frequency allocations.
That pretty much sums them up! But they were heavily involved in the extremely severe Black Saturday bush-fires that happened primarily in the state of Victoria during 2009, for instance, being a key part of the organization effort to tackle the firestorms that ensued. Those fires were considered some of the very worst in recorded history throughout all of Australia and given our current policies on managing shrub-land, fuel buildup, and back-burning, this is only going to occur again sometime soon once again with similar intensity, alas.