JOTA time already?? MWRS has hosted activities for the Scouts and Girl Guides for several years and this year was another busy and fun experience! We had around 180 kids come through the hall over the weekend of 19th-20th October. MWRS put on a variety of activities such as:
- Build a VHF station – Connect a feedline and antenna to the top of a mast, raise mast into the sky, connect feedline to radio, set the power supply voltage and make a contact over the radio.
- Echolink – Talk to hams and other scout groups via an internet-connected laptop (in keeping with the ‘wireless’ aspect of our hobby this was done using 3G!)
- DSTAR – Use a digital radio to talk to other scout groups in Australia and overseas.
- Battleships (game) – communicate via two way radio with a second group in another building, and try and sink each other’s ships! Kids practiced using the phonetic alphabet to make their coordinates easy to understand eg “Alpha One” , “Charlie Three”.
All these activities were very popular, the Battleships game was a new addition and had the kids engaging competitively over the radio and acting as a team. Each activity was manned by a MWRS volunteer in 3 hour shifts. The volunteers also had a ready source of caffeine thanks to Mark VK2MP bringing his coffee maker. Many thanks also to Felicity Faed for catering lunch for the volunteers on Saturday!
We also had an APRS (Automatic Packet Reporting System) transmitter on the JOTA bus, and the current position of the bus shown on a map display on the projector. This gave us the ability to see when the next wave of scouts was arriving.
A big thanks to all MWRS volunteers and equipment providers, the weekend was a great success!