December YOTA Month 2017 is Over!

December YOTA Month has finished and we loved supporting this great event again for the fourth year running.

The event encourages young people to experience the excitement and diversity that amateur radio has to offer with other activities running alongside the on-air station. These can include kit building, direction finding and other wireless-related activities.
DX15 Building G0FUW

In 2016 the UK managed 3,145 QSOs in December thanks to the fantastic effort from all participants. We are happy to say that this year attracted a number of different clubs, societies and schools who took part in December. 19 clubs took part across 19 days of the callsign being active. This year we managed to make around 670 contacts with many youngsters taking part passing their greetings messages.

The hosts of the GB17YOTA call sign throughout December were:

01 Sandringham School
02 RSGB Youth Committee Region 7 Representative, Will Davies (being supervised by a Full licence holder)
03 Wessex Contest Group
05 Carrickfergus ARG
06 Southampton University Wireless Society
07 Chertsey Radio Club
08 Hilderstone Radio Club
09 Worksop ARS
10 Mid-Ulster ARC
11 The Kings School Radio Club, Ottery St.Mary
12 Worcester Rado Amateurs Association
13 Aberystwyth And District ARS
14 Swansea Radio Society
15 Silcoates School
16 Durham and District Amateur Radio Society
17 ”
20 Castle Rushen High School
21 Castle Rushen High School
22 ”
23 Mid-Ulster ARC
24 ”
28 Leicester Radio Society
29 Telford & DARS
30 RSGB NRC
31 ”

We were very happy with the level of enthusiasm and effort shown by not only the members activating the special callsign, but also the youngsters that were operating the stations. We received a lot of positive feedback from clubs and societies telling us about how good of an event it was in trying to get young people into radio and this is what we strive to do, we want people to be able to say that they inspired a young person into getting involved in what is perceived a ‘old mans’ hobby. However, we can not say that as an event it was perfect, we could not accommodate every club that applied which decreases the number of young people on air. This is something that will have to be considered for next year as we take part again.

A particularly notable activation was carried out by Peter Barnes and Swansea Radio Society. This is a particularly impressive example as Peter has accomplished reviving his university radio society and in the feedback from Swansea Radio Society there was a massive increase in membership with people queuing to register for their society. This has always been the aim of this project, internationally as well as nationally, to get young people to sign up to learn more and to progress through their licenses.

Overall, YOTA Month 2017 was a great success and everyone who took part should feel really good for what they have achieved.