The Cowichan Valley Community Radio Society has received a large grant-in-aid from the CVRD that will help keep the lake’s local station on-air.
Last Wednesday the CVRD approved a $6,000 grant for the not-for-profit society, which runs Radio Cowichan.
Director Michael Bishop said he and his fellow volunteers from the station were thrilled by the news because if they had not secured funding for upgrades by the end of March, the station could have been taken off the airwaves.
“We have to have, by the end of this month, an emergency broadcast system in place that hooks our station in with the rest of the national emergency broadcast system,” he said.
He noted that the modem and software required to install this system cost close to $5,000.
Radio Cowichan needs to be connected to the country’s national alerting system that sends out warnings in the event of a natural disaster, dangerous weather conditions or other emergency event.
“If we didn’t put [the system] in there they could shut us. We’d be in non-compliance with the CRTC,” said Bishop.
The remaining funds will be used for additional computer software for the station.
“It allows us to update our on-air broadcasting system to a newer and more up-to-date model…which will be much more user friendly for operators,” he said.
The CVRD’s grants-in-aid program provides financial assistance to locally based organizations that benefit Cowichan Valley residents and whose efforts are regional in nature.