Station seeking community support during inaugural 36-hour Great Southern FM RadioThon

Stuart McGuckinAlbany Advertiser
Great Southern FM's Julie Bright, Ros McKinven and Kathy Suggate.
Camera IconGreat Southern FM's Julie Bright, Ros McKinven and Kathy Suggate. Credit: Laurie Benson

Albany’s only dedicated community radio station will spend 36 hours on Friday and Saturday drumming up extra support to keep it on air throughout the year.

Great Southern FM is in its 30th year and will be holding its inaugural RadioThon from midday Friday through to midnight on Saturday.

Kathy Suggate, one of the station’s volunteers driving the event, is hopeful Albany will throw its support behind the special broadcast.

“Many community members don’t realise that GSFM receives no government funding and is run entirely by volunteers who raise all the funds required to run the station each year,” she said.

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“GSFM is a registered charity and relies solely on donations, sponsorships, memberships, grants and good will.”

The station is encouraging listeners to donate over the 36 hour-drive and to interact with presenters via social media, messaging, calling or by popping in to the North Road studio to have a chat.

Ms Suggate said as Albany’s only community radio station Great Southern FM provided a lot of free services and was able to help give a voice to those who often did not have one.

“It is all about local for us,” she said.

“We want to make a difference and grow bigger, stronger and better.

“We want to continue our strong connections within our communities and develop these relationships even more.”

She said the cost of running the station was about $90,000 each year and they were unsure what they might raise given it was the first RadioThon.

“Like all businesses we have bills and we also have equipment and other infrastructure that needs maintenance, and from time to time replacing,” she said.

“We also have dreams and would love to be able to bring the station to others, to events and activities involving our not-for-profit sector and really highlight and showcase all the ways volunteers are making a difference in the Great Southern.

“To do that we need a mobile studio, such as a van kitted out with the right equipment.”

Listeners can tune into GSFM on 100.9FM and can message the studio via social media or on 0483 951 009 or call 9842 3456.

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