It was 1994 when senior design engineer, Mike Axman, returned from Burkina Faso where SonSet Solutions has helped establish multiple Christian FM stations. He approached our director with the critical need for durable, fixed-tuned, solar-powered radio receivers to provide clear reception for their listeners. Without reliable receivers, these radio stations would be ineffective in reaching their communities.
In 2001, SonSet Solutions presented a project for just such a radio receiver to senior design students at several universities. Key designs were chosen, and our engineers got to work putting it all together. Our first SonSet® radios were shipped in 2005.
The SonSet radio has gone through several upgrades and now features AM, FM and shortwave reception. This past December, our 100,000th SonSet radio was part of an order shipped to a security-sensitive country in West Africa.
Over the past 18 years, volunteers from the community as well as from out of state have made this milestone possible, providing the manpower we needed to prepare the radios for shipment to remote regions of the globe.
SonSet radios have been distributed in 72 countries on six continents. These hand-held receivers are a lifeline where electricity is scarce, and batteries are expensive or hard to find. They are distributed in the vicinities of our partner Christian radio stations and fixed-tuned to pick up only those frequencies. Mike Axman shares, “To have something that is a companion to our partner station’s transmitter finishes the link between the guy behind the microphone and the potential listener.”
SonSet radios give more people access to gospel programming and build a relationship of trust. Many are hearing messaging in their own local language, often for the first time. Countless lives have been transformed, and churches have been birthed. We may never know the full impact these little receivers have had, but we celebrate this milestone – 100,000 SonSet radios delivered worldwide and counting!
By Erica Simone, February 2024