Early last year I purchased a VHF radio thinking it would be an additional safety feature to have access to communications with our various trips.
However, I found out it is illegal to operate a VHF radio without a certificate and one could be subject to a $5000 fine.
This motivated our KNL group to bring in a local communications expert: Fred Meadus from CONA who spoke at considerable length about communications generally, protocols, phonetic alphabet and equipment.
His talk motivated me to complete the course offered by the Canadian Power and Sail Squadron and I subsequently received the ROC(M).
Having a certification doesn't guarantee you will be understood - so a key element of any communication is to speak slowly, calmly and clearly.