The Sasakawa Pacific Island Nations Fund provided a grant to the University of Guam of 56,383,661yen (about USD560,000) from 1997 to 2006. This grant aimed to improve Distance Education policy and systems for the whole Micronesian region. An additional result of this project is access to HF radio facilities. Almost 60 remote islands of Micronesia now have a solar powered HF radio facility which they use to support not only their health and education departments, but also to save many lives from accidents during SAR and disaster related events. I tried to make a diagram of the communication network for SAR in consultation from Mr. Bruce Best who is in charge of this project at UOG.
Typically, emergency calls from remote islands are received by Mr. Best, who is based in Guam. Mr. Best then makes contacts with the USCG, who then contacts the respective island government for approval. This is because the USCG can not offer support without an official request from these island governments. After receiving the official request from the respective island government USCG can then take action. During these arrangements Mr. Best and the USCG keep in close contact with the remote islands. Although this diagram is only one example, the use of solar powered HF radio has made a drastic and important change to peoples lives from these remote islands. Beforehand they did not have any communication tools with the outside world. The technological advantage they now have has given them the opportunity to use email and some still picture transfers for medical , educational, disaster mitigation and management use and VOIP with HF radio. Although some higher technological satellite based communication networks will now work and are finding their way to the remote islands across the Pacific, HF radio use is preferred. As it has no reoccurring associated costs, HF radio will remain the primary means for long range humanitarian communication across the vast area of Micronesia for many years. Who made it possible? Mr Best emailed me: "HF radio is older than I, I just try to support the region by listening,communicating, upgrading and maximizing the network." Mr. Best keeps working 7 days a week as a volunteer for the Micronesian remote islands. Reference: RANET Pacific Sites as of 2007