SEASAR volunteers

South Eastern Alberta Search and Rescue Association (SEASAR) is launching its annual volunteer recruitment drive with an open house and prospective member’s meetings on Sunday, Oct. 6, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Association president Paul Carolan says volunteering for SEASAR is a unique, rewarding opportunity and civic duty.

“The range of volunteer roles is diverse. We conduct searches for authorities in the region, so of course we need people with the ability and desire to be outdoors in all weathers and seasons,” he says.

“Our capacity includes an aviation team in association with HALO Air Ambulance, a rapid response team, our rescue boat, the Utility Terrain Vehicle, amateur radio communications, swift water rescue, preventative SAR through community presentations, and more. There really can be something for everyone.”

However, Carolan encourages people to the think seriously about the commitment.=

“Searches don’t usually take place on Saturday morning after a good night’s sleep and a hot breakfast, they usually take place in poor weather, in the dark.  We respond to active calls out 15 to 20 times a year. To be ready for those emergencies, a typical volunteer must prepare with a mandatory Search and Rescue Basics course, acquire equipment, and be available for training throughout the year.”

SEASAR is a 100 percent volunteer organization, he says, and is funded almost entirely by donations.  “That means we need volunteers who are willing to help in many ways such as administration, participating in community events, even sweeping the floor and keeping the trucks clean.”

The reward is a unique way to serve people in the community at a time of need.

Carolan invites anyone interested in a volunteer role with SEASAR to an open house and information session on October 6 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., presentations will be offered at 11:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. at the Medicine Hat Airport maintenance building; 1501 Gershaw Drive SW, Medicine Hat.

Established in 1999, SEASAR is a non-profit, volunteer-based association devoted to the safety and well-being of the community. To learn more, visit www.seasar.ca.

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