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Volunteer Induction

Welcome to the Radio 4RPH Volunteer Induction. Here you will find out about the station, it’s organisational structure, about the community radio structure, and where you fit in as an integral part of this organisation. You will also find key documents that you will need to read. If you need any help or have a question, you can call us on 07 3831 1296 or email


Community Broadcasting has had a long and compelling history in Australia. It is also the largest independent media sector comprising of over 450 stations both metro and regional. Latest survey results from the community radio peak body, the Community Broadcasting Association of Australia (CBAA), shows that over 5.3 million Australians listen to community radio and it keeps growing.

Many listeners of community radio love the independent music that some stations play, over 48 per cent of listeners tune into community radio for their local news and information. That’s where Radio 4RPH comes in. We are the only Queensland community radio station that is dedicated to news and information. We stand by our motto of “Empowerment through Information” by delivering more news, educational content, and community information than any other station.

Radio for the Print Handicapped (RPH) services was started as a part of Melbourne’s 3ZZ service in 1975. It was during this time that Radio 4RPH founder, Spero Dragona, first held a public forum in Brisbane to discuss starting something similar in Brisbane.
In 1978, the Minister for Post and Telecommunications put the might of the government behind the idea and announced funding for “special radio communications service for the blind and other people with reading difficulties.” With this funding Queensland Radio for the Print, Handicapped Limited was established and started broadcasting the daily newspapers for an hour each morning on Classical community radio station 4MBS.

Spero kept pushing for the station to have a signal of its own and his persistence paid off. In February 1984, Radio 4RPH launched as its own dedicated radio service. Currently, the station broadcasts on 1296AM, Digital+, and streams online. The organisation is a not-for-profit charity business that uses grants, sponsorship, and donations to operate

Historically, Radio 4RPH catered to an over 60s, vision impaired, and blind communities. However, in 2017 the station began its most ambitious reinvention. The mission of creating a station that continued its historical purpose of creating informative content for those with a print disability, but also expanding the station’s reach to more communities. “Empowerment through Information” was chosen as the new motto to reflect that Radio 4RPH wasn’t passively delivering its audience the news but engaging them through it. It is becoming more accessible and community-driven than ever before.

The station started from the ground up, improving the station’s Spring Hill Studios by replacing the 30 plus-year-old equipment, rebranding the station with a new logo and signage, restructuring the organisation, and engaging with its volunteers, members, and community in ways never thought possible.


Radio 4RPH is a living and learning community radio station; this means that while the station could simply let computers run the broadcast, it feels that it’s essential to have the human touch. Radio 4RPH relies on many dedicated volunteers that help produce and read all the content on the station.

As a not-for-profit charity organisation, Radio 4RPH must have a dedicated Board that will oversee the governance and ensure the correct operation. As well, that the station operates ethically and sustainably. The Board comprises of volunteer members from all business and community backgrounds.

Our current Board

  • Spencer Howson (President)
  • Steve Richardson (Vice President)
  • Rennisson Murray (Treasurer)
  • Shayne Rudd (Secretary)
  • Paul Price
  • Jan Huggett
  • Susan Lindsay

While Reading Radio 4RPH broadcasts through the use of volunteers, there is a small staff of paid experts that make it run smoothly. Station Manager Scott Black has been with the station since 2017 and has led many of the new changes and initiatives of the station. Volunteer Coordinator Paula Lewis manages the large volunteer base and volunteer communications. Production & Programming Coordinator Jacob Viel schedules production of programs and schedules content for broadcast. SolutionsWire News Editor Juliano Oliveira heads up our newsroom and journalism volunteers. Projects Assistant Jacqueline Cowan handles social media and admin projects.

Our three technical producers are like no others. For a start, Paul Price, Steve Richardson, and Steve Sparrow are dedicated detailed oriented producers that make some of the best sounding content in all community radio. They are also blind. Reading Radio 4RPH prides itself on being one of the only stations in the world that purposely engineers it’s broadcast and production studios to ensure they are accessible to those with a vision impairment or are blind.

The lifeblood of Radio 4RPH is, of course, it’s volunteer base. Currently, there are over 200 volunteers on our database and growing all the time. We love it when new volunteers come in and get excited at the possibilities that we can offer.

Our volunteers, produce programs, run the broadcast panel, read live, record books and magazines, help around the office, and sit on our committees. You get out what you put in at Radio 4RPH, and everyone’s input is always welcome.

As of 2018, we introduced the Spero Awards (named after founder Spero Dragona) which are volunteer awards that recognise long service and extraordinary service.

Members are financial contributors to the station. Some are volunteers while others are listeners, but all took the extra step to pay membership fees and are actively part of the operation of the station.

Members have added rights to being a part of the organisation. They get to attend exclusive events and meetings as well as vote for the Board of Directors.


There are many opportunities for volunteering at Radio 4RPH, here is a brief description of each one.

Every day, Radio 4RPH broadcasts live readings of the daily newspapers. Our live readers are detail focused and eloquently voiced. A live reader chooses their stories from the publications and reads them live on air.

Running the studio is the Announcer. They are responsible for all the buttons, sliders, switches, and levers that are in the studio. They will announce the weather, the schedule, and if they desire will also read stories during live readings.

Those that want to read for the station, but schedules might not line up with our live broadcasts, can offer their talents to our pre-recorded content. These are mostly magazines and books that are read during these programs. However, the content is growing.

In 2019, Radio 4RPH will be launching its own newsroom. This is a highly ambitious project that will require journalists and writers eager to cover newsworthy stories, conduct interviews and write about what is going on in Brisbane. It will give a new service an immediate audience online and on air.

If you are not keen to read for the station but want to help, we have a new position of Greeter & Office Assistant. This role has you as the first face many will see when they come into the studios. You’ll be a seated in our reception air and greet the volunteers and visitors. You’ll also assist the Station Manager and Office Manager with some light office duties.

A remote volunteering option for those that are computer savvy. If you have experience in WordPress and Social Media, we can always use some hands-on help with our digital presence.

We never claim to have it all figured out. If you think there are other ways that you can help Radio 4RPH, email and let us know.


We want everyone to be a part of the station. If a community station is community minded and community guided than it’s honestly a community station. Here are the two advisory committees that you could be on.

One of the most important aspects of a charity not-for-profit is to ensure good governance, mindful of any risks that the station might be undertaking, and, of course, the station’s finances. This board is currently made up of Board members and staff.

The yin to the other committee’s yang is the committee that focuses on who we are, what we broadcast, and how we engage with the community. It’s also one of the biggest committees that is made up of Board members, staff, volunteers, and members.


At your convenience, please read the documents below. They are the policies and governance documents that are the backbone of our station.  You will also be required to acknowledge that you have read them in order to volunteer.

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