RTRFM Radiothon: annual fundraiser sees station ‘take bull by the horns’


RTRFM general manager Stu MacLeod, DJ Caitlin Nienaber and music co-ordinator Will Backer. Picture: Andrew Ritchie
RTRFM general manager Stu MacLeod, DJ Caitlin Nienaber and music co-ordinator Will Backer. Picture: Andrew Ritchie

RTRFM is embracing the chaos that comes with its annual Radiothon fundraiser.

During the 10-day push for funding from August 12 to 21 that will make up 30 per cent of the Mt Lawley- based community radio station’s annual operating income, regular programming goes out the window and the place is swamped with extra volunteers.

But the team would not have it any other way.

RTRFM general manager Stu MacLeod, who is overseeing his first radiothon, said they were taking the bull by the horns this year.

“We really tried to embrace the chaos factor with this year’s message Come to the Party, so it’s kind of that party, excitement atmosphere,” he said.

Breakfast presenter Caitlin Nienaber said while the station welcomes the community support, it can be a time of high pressure behind the scenes.

“It’s kind of chaotic and stressful for people because normally they come in and do their show but this time they are doing a call-out to people and there’s lots of people coming into the stations and on the phone rooms; in the boardroom we have a room of phones and people take calls,” she said.

Mr MacLeod, who took on the role of general manager in December last year, said the focus for this fundraiser has shifted from previous years.

“We have repositioned the message. In the past its been like ‘this is how much it costs to run the station’ whereas this year it’s more people telling stories what RTRFM means to them and how it’s affected their life,” he said.

“It affects the community. It’s not only the internal community of 300 people within this organisation of which 99 per cent are volunteers, but the hundred thousand that listen.”

Mr MacLeod said he looked forward to gathering stories from people affected by the station for its 40th anniversary next year.

Subscribe or donate at rtrfm.com.au or 9260 9210.