Here’s How Garden School Is Helping Families Get in Touch with Loved Ones Affected by the Recent Hurricanes and Earthquake

September was noted as the strongest hurricane month in 139 years, with five major hurricanes that devastated Texas, Florida, Caribbean islands, and Puerto Rico. Along with that, a 7.1 earthquake hit Mexico and the death toll has risen to more than 340 people.

Many New Yorkers have families and loved ones in these areas and have not been able to contact them due to loss of power and cell phone service—however Garden School in Jackson Heights, Queens is giving people the opportunity to send messages to people in these areas via radio. 

Garden School’s Amateur Radio Club partnered with Amateur Radio Emergency Services to be able to send messages to areas that have been affected by the recent natural disasters. The station uses radios that do not require the use of a power grid and can run off of a small generator.

All you have to do is fill out an American Radio Relay League Radiogram with 25 words or less and the message will be relayed through multiple stations until it reaches the person you are trying to contact. The messages can be sent through relief organizations to alert the sender of the person’s location and other information. 

If you would like to use the Garden School’s service, contact the radio station at [email protected]. The school’s call sign is K2GSG.

The radio club is the only school-based radio club in New York City and recently won a blue ribbon for the Editor’s Choice Award at the World Maker Faire at the New York Hall of Science this past weekend for innovation, creativity, and ingenuity, according to a press release. 

Radio club members distributed free Morse code kits and helped visitors assemble their own kits using soldering irons. Visitors were able to take home these kits and Morse code keys that can transmit by light and sound.

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Main image: Garden School’s Amateur Radio Club teamed up with Amateur Radio Emergency Services to relay messages using a radio that does not require power and can run off of a small generator.
Courtesy Garden School