By Hope 103.2Tuesday 24 Mar 2020
As the COVID-19 situation unfolds, many listeners have reached out to Hope 103.2 for prayer and support – and have also asked how we’re all doing. So Abby McPharlin caught up with our CEO Phillip Randall, for a chat about how we’re affected, and how we’ll manage the impact into the future. He also shared a very encouraging message of hope…
How Are You And the Hope Ministry Going?
We’re doing well, but doing a lot of adjusting and careful work on what the future may hold.
“I personally have uncertainty, I’m sure all our listeners do, they don’t know what the future holds,” said Phillip. “The great thing though, as a Christian, is that although there’s uncertainty at one level, there’s also a sense of absolute certainty in God.
“It might have caught us by surprise, but He’s fully aware of what’s happening.”
“We can understand that as individuals in a world at the moment that is really uncertain there is a certainty that God the Creator has got a plan. And we can lean into that. We don’t understand it, we don’t know it, we don’t see it at this moment in time, but we can trust.
“What’s hope about, ultimately? It’s about the future and what God has promised us for the future.”
How is COVID-19 Affecting the Hope Team and the Organisation?
There are a number of impacts on both our staff, and our financial outlook.
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Several staff have been on holiday overseas, and coming home they’ve had to go into isolation for 14 days and work from home. Some members of the frontline, our Content Team, are already working from home—and we’re also looking at possibly splitting our team up on a rotation between at-work and at-home.
Due to the impact on businesses and industry, this crisis is going to put a real strain on the ministry. Around half of our support comes from listener donations and partnerships, and the rest from sponsorship.
“We need to make sure we remain strong, to keep sending you and the community messages of hope, both now and in the future.”
“We’re already seeing the businesses and Christian ministries that would normally use us, saying, ‘I’ve got nothing to advertise at the moment’, or ‘I’m not sure if my business will be around in the next few months’,” said Phillip.
“So we are expecting a fairly significant drop in sponsorship advertising. We’re looking very closely at our finances for the next couple of years, running all sorts of budget scenarios, and looking at how best we can make sure the ministry is strong to be here for the community at a time of significant need.”
Why is it Important to Keep the Hope Media Ministry Going?
We need to make sure we remain strong, to keep sending you and the community messages of hope, both now and in the future!
“It is incredibly important that when people are uncertain of the future, that there is an anchor point,” Phillip said. “And the anchor point at one level is not the radio station, although God uses the radio station… The anchor point is all that’s contained within the Good News about Jesus.
“there is an understanding, as you look at the scripture, that ‘God’s got it’. God is not surprised. There’s a certainty that regardless of what we’re experiencing, God loves us, cares for us and wants the very best for us. This is why having a Christian radio station remain strong and vibrant and able to broadcast, is super important, to be that voice in the community of saying, ‘There is a God, He loves, He cares, you can trust Him’.
Hope Media is committed to being a point of difference in a very noisy and hyped-up media landscape.
“Sadly, media can move into a place of hype and exaggeration,” said Phillip. “This is a serious situation we face as a nation and as a world – but unfortunately the media likes the car crashes, the plane crashes, the meltdowns of the stock market… it gives [them] something to talk about. So it’s really important for us as Christian media ministry… to say ‘Yes, it’s serious, but let’s not overhype it’.”
How is Hope Media Supporting the Community?
In every way we can!
Our on-air team is working hard to keep you informed with all the latest news, helpful advice for adjusting to these strange times, and also to keep things lighthearted and give you a laugh at times, too.
And we’re also partnering with you in prayer, through Hope + Prayer.
“We want to pray for you and your circumstance, we want to pray for our community together, and we want to pray for those who are working so hard to keep us all safe,” said Phillip. “We want to stand with you in this and journey through these next months with you, as we’ve done in the past.”
What Encouragement Does Hope Have to Share With Listeners?
We’re in this together!
“We want to go on this journey, do life with you, over the next weeks and months, for as long as this particular situation lasts,” said Phillip.
“There will be times when we feel anxious or concerned. There will be times when we have to isolate. But I’d love you to know that we’re with you on this journey. And you can join us on the journey by listening in to the radio station, and knowing that we are there to support you. Whatever we can do to support you that’s what we’re here to do. And we will get through this.
“One of the things we must never forget, is that we don’t do this journey on our own – but we do this journey with God. God has not left us. We don’t need to despair.
“Yes, it’s been an interesting few months across summer in Australia and now into this particular time, but God has not left us, and He loves us and cares for us, and wants the very best for us.
“What we’re going through is not something God has caused, it’s just a part of what happens in a world that’s fallen. And God loves us and cares for us and wants to support us.
“We’d love you to rest into God, lean into God during this time, and journey with us as a Christian media ministry.”