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Renegade Radio is proud to be a media partner with the City of Sparks and Project Impact.
Project Impact is a national effort, sponsored by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, that aims to reduce the cost of disasters in terms of both property and lives. The initiative's goal is to have communities across the nation assess vulnerabilities to natural hazards and implement actions that protect families, businesses and communities by preparing for and reducing the damaging effects of natural and technological disasters.
On October 12, 1999, numerous disaster mitigation projects were launched in Sparks as a result of this initiative.
Funded Project Impact Partners include the City of Sparks, Nevada Humane Society, Northern Nevada Medical Center, Sierra Nevada Chapter of the American Red Cross, State of Nevada Division of Mental Health, Sparks' Supply One Home Centers, University of Nevada Reno, Visual Imagry Inc. and SierraPacific Power Company Lifeline Utilities.
Sparks Project Impact Media partners include KOLO TV (Channel 8), KOH News Talk Radio (780 am) and KRNG Renegade Radio (101.3 fm). These fine media outlets have all agreed to provide regular Project Impact coverage to the City.
FEMA Selects Renegade Radio and KOH News Radio 780 as the Project Impact Radio Example for the Country
Targeting New Audiences Radio Stations Spread Disaster Prevention Message to Diverse Groups Faced with a high risk for earthquakes, floods and other natural disasters, residents of Sparks, Nev. decided to face their threats proactively.
The community joined FEMA's Project Impact: Building Disaster Resistant Communities in 1998 to encourage the adoption of preventive measures before a major seismic event or flood.
Two radio stations - News Radio 780 KOH and Renegade Radio 101.3 are actively involved in ensuring Project Impact tips are hitting the airwaves and that Sparks' residents are becoming disaster resistant. Targeting young and old alike, both stations are working hard to inform the entire community about Project Impact. But their efforts don't stop with the airwaves.
"780 KOH and Renegade Radio have been an integral part of the success of the Project Impact program here in Sparks," said Ben Hutchins, Project Impact steering committee chairman. "Their innovation in using various mediums to reach different people in the community has kept disaster prevention fresh in people's minds."
Each Tuesday morning, 780 KOH devotes five minutes of its "Breakfast Club" show to highlight the Sparks Project Impact activities and other disaster prevention topics. Previous guests on the show have ranged from members of the Project Impact steering committee, to seismology experts from local universities, to representatives from the local Red Cross chapter.
Reaching out to a much younger audience, Christian rock station Renegade Radio is focusing on informing Sparks youth about Project Impact and disaster prevention. The station operates an on-air youth disaster education program. Listeners can call in to participate in a disaster prevention quiz and win prizes. Each caller is entered into a weekly drawing for CDs and a monthly drawing for large prizes such as bicycles and CD/TV/Radio-in-one units.
Both stations regularly broadcast Project Impact Public Service Announcements (PSAs). Renegade Radio even develops its own set of spots - using unique scripts and its own personalities to talk about Project Impact, and produces the spots for free.
Renegade Radio further solidifies their commitment to the effort by broadcasting the commercials three times as frequently as defined by their contract with the city.
Seeing the success they have had informing the community via the airwaves, the stations decided to conquer other mediums as well. On the Internet, 780 KOH and Renegade Radio both offer Project Impact related content and audio or linkage to the Sparks Project Impact Web site. Renegade Radio also regularly promotes Project Impact at station-sponsored concerts and events.
"Both stations have committed so many resources into helping us get the message out," Hutchins said. "It definitely goes beyond just PSAs; they have truly become partners in the effort."
The projects that 780 KOH and Renegade Radio have developed provide evidence of just how broad and inclusive a disaster prevention program can be by reaching out to varied audiences and taking advantage of new types of communication. Their dedication to Project Impact goals and generous commitment to the Sparks community are an example for media partners across the country.
THE CITY OF SPARKS - A NATIONAL LEADER
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has named Sparks, Nevada, out of a pool of nearly 250 communities, one of ten Project Impact Star Communities in the country.
Sparks received the award for the implementation of numerous disaster mitigation projects and for accomplishments in disaster education and their assistance in the community with measures that can be taken to prevent damage from earthquakes, floods, wildfires and chemical spills.
The Project Impact Star Communities award is given out annually to ten communities in the country that exemplify the sprit, innovation and commitment necessary to be a successful Project Impact community. FEMA's Project Impact: Building Disaster Resistant Communities aims to organize and implement mitigation projects throughout the nation as well as educate all Americans about the importance of disaster damage prevention.
"Project Impact is about saving lives, protecting property, protecting the economic and social fabric of communities and saving citizens the heartache of disaster," said FEMA Director James Lee Witt. "Communities like Sparks are making great strides in educating and protecting its residents from disasters and shines as an inspiration for other communities to follow."
The City of Sparks has over seventy Project Impact Partners, including over forty organizations, that have assisted in the implementation of projects to assist the following segments of the population: - Seniors - Youth - Disabled - Animals - Businesses - General Population
Within the time frame of one year the City of Sparks, with assistance from its' partners, implemented over twenty projects and is currently working on local fundraising efforts to implement other projects related to disaster mitigation and preparedness.
"We are pleased to recognize Sparks as a Project Impact Star Community," said Martha Whetstone, regional director for FEMA's Region IX, which includes Nevada. "Sparks exemplifies what every community can achieve when it works together to reduce the devastating effects of disasters."
The City of Sparks was recognized in Washington D.C. on November 15th at the Project Impact Summit 2000 - an annual event that gathers representatives from cities, towns, state governments, voluntary agencies and corporations across the country to celebrate efforts to inform American's about disaster prevention measures.
In addition to being honored as a national Star Community, the City of Sparks Project Impact campaign recently received two other national and international awards.
During the month of November, FEMA recognized the efforts of the City of Sparks' radio partners - News Radio 780 KOH and Renegade Radio 101.3 fm. These fine media outlets were chosen by FEMA as the Project Impact radio case study for the country. "Without the support and dedication of media partners such as KOH and Renegade Radio, it would have been difficult to reach the community in a meaningful way," said Ben Hutchins, Steering Committee Chairman for the Sparks Project Impact campaign. "They truly exemplify the spirit of community outreach and working together towards a common goal."
On October 5, 2000, the Sparks Project Impact web site www.disasterplans.com was presented the 2000 - 2001 International Association of Web Masters and Designers Golden Web Award for excellence achieved in web design, content and creativity. For more information about the City of Sparks Project Impact campaign or disaster mitigation, call (775) 353-1619 or visit the City of Sparks Project Impact web site.