There are a number of different ways that you can get involved with Whistle FM. You can become a member, become a volunteer or host a show:
Community Radio is driven by volunteers. We have a growing number of volunteers helping in a myriad of ways.
You can participate on air, off air, in advertising, in a technical capacity, as an administrator, as a show host, record ads, and more. You may already have the skills required for the job for which you would like to do, or you might be interested in learning more about the activity (such as producing a show). We will train you if you don’t yet have the skills or background you need.
If you are interested in volunteering at Whistle FM, click the Download Volunteer Form link below and send it in to us. Our contact information is shown on the left side of this page.
Membership costs only $20, is valid for one year and entitles you to vote at our Annual General Meeting. Most importantly, membership keeps Whistle FM ‘on the air.’
You can purchase your membership in person at our studio, or by mail. See the left side of this page for our contact information.
Host Your Own Show
Whistle FM is always interested in hearing about new programme ideas. If you want any of your ideas to be considered you should:
- Take a few hours listening to the station. This will give you an idea of the type of station we are.
- Know that Whistle FM is a 100% volunteer operation. We have no resources to pay for anything related to programming (we DO pay SOCAN, the organization collecting royalties for the music played, so you are can use any music and not worry about royalties/copyright etc.)
- Understand that the CRTC have got several rules that apply to community radio stations. These are complex and sometimes our hands are tied with respect to programming.
- Realize that when you are proposing a show, remember that you will be doing this almost every week. It is a commitment not to be undertaken lightly.
The best procedure is to e-mail Don Maitland, Programming Director firstname.lastname@example.org with your idea. He will then call you to discuss the idea on the phone. If the idea seems promising, we will invite you to prepare a “pilot show” and then we can arrange to have this produced. The pilot – or trial – show is then broadcast in a special time slot (6pm on Sundays). This gives other volunteers a chance to provide feedback on the show. If all goes well, a regular time slot will be allocated.
Please note that we are short of capacity and volunteers to help you produce new shows and we may not be able to help you in this area.
People who present reasonable ideas, understand what is involved in terms of commitment and actually produce a “pilot” are almost always successful in getting a regular time slot.
Here are a few things to keep in mind when making your pitch:
- Commitment to our community radio station is essential.
- We will train you. Experience is not necessary.
- These are volunteer positions, they are not paid.
- The CRTC requires that at least 25% of our content be community-oriented spoken word
- Ask yourself, “do I want to do a feature or an entire show?”.
Think about how often you can commit:a half hour daily show , a ten minute weekly piece … whatever.
- Think about when you can commit. Part of the success of your show will come from its predictability and consistency- “same bat-time, same bat-channel” kind of thing.
- Ideally, a pitch will come from at least two people. One person will be the main announcer and one person will be the main producer.
Here are some questions to help you deliver your pitch successfully:
- What makes you a good announcer?
- How is the show different from what is currently available in the GTA?
- Who will listen to your show and why will they listen?
- Is the show live or pre-recorded?
- Is the show primarily talk or music?
- If your show is a music format, can you ensure that it is at least 50% Canadian music (by the MAPL standard) . We have other restrictions too … but don’t get bogged down in detail at this point.
- If your show is talk format, who will you talk to?
Once your pitch is made you’ll be invited to produce an audition that will be aired on our Show Dee Jay for a day. The programming committee will read your pitch and listen to your audition and make a decision. Those accepted for on-air positions are required to become members.