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Shortwave: International Radio for Disaster Relief (IRDR)

Humanitarian Aspects of HFCC Activities

HFCC is a non-governmental, non-profit association, and a sector member of the International Telecommunication Union in Geneva in the category of international and regional organizations. It manages, and co-ordinates global databases of international shortwave broadcasting in keeping with International Radio Regulations of the ITU. 

The HFCC provides representation, tools and services to its members for the resolution or minimization of instances of mutual interference among shortwave transmissions. Organizes regular conferences prior to the start-dates of seasonal broadcasting schedules that coincide with the dates of clock-time changes for the summer and winter periods. There are two seasonal schedules and their validity is global. The schedule designated "A" corresponds to the summer, and "B" to the winter period on the Northern hemisphere.

From its infancy since 1920s shortwave radio has been associated with its potential of being a communication tool in emergencies. This use of shortwave radio is still
very much present among amateur radio enthusiasts for example, who discovered its long distance properties early in the twentieth century. Amateur radio provides a
means of communication on shortwaves and other frequencies "when all else fails". This role of amateur radio is well recognised, valued and appreciated both by the
public and by the world institutions managing and regulating the use of the radio spectrum.

In contrast the huge technical potential of international shortwave broadcasting that operates transmitter facilities tens, or hundred times, more powerful than those of
amateur radio, remains almost unused in emergencies. At the moment when local and even regional communication and information networks are needed most, they
are destroyed or overloaded and the population suffers from an information blackout. 

Shortwave radio is capable of remaining the only source of information.
Although the life-saving role of radio broadcasting is widely recognised by the public, and confirmed by surveys conducted after the recent disasters - and even
acknowledged by world leaders - no concrete projects have been ever designed and no regulatory framework has been developed.

That is why the HFCC - International Broadcasting Delivery in co-operation with the Arab States and Asia-Pacific broadcasting unions are working on an International
Radio for Disaster Relief (IRDR) project that is based on the system of online co-ordination of frequencies managed by the HFCC in accordance with International Radio

For more information and frequencies, visit their website:

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