They spend time outdoors, they give back to the community, they learn new skills and, most importantly, they save lives.
They are the volunteers of Shuswap Search and Rescue.
If you are willing to give your time, you might be who Shuswap Search and Rescue is looking for.
Shuswap SAR is currently recruiting.
“The biggest thing is they have to be willing to commit their time, work as a team and learn,” says volunteer of seven years, Susan Mah.
Volunteers can be called out all hours of the day and night, 365 days a year, in all weather conditions. They train once a week and one weekend day per month.
Training for new recruits involves classroom, online and practical training. All members become certified in ground search and rescue techniques as well as first aid.
Mah says to become a member there is a 75-hour program that’s taught in-house, starting in early December. Training involves classroom, online and practical learning.
She describes her time as a SAR volunteer as “really fantastic.”
“Search and Rescue has a pretty great group; it’s kind of like a little family. We are there to help people but there’s a lot of camaraderie. We do have a lot of fun together in our training.”
She adds that volunteers don’t have to be ultra-marathon runners or super-star athletes.
“We need members who are able to go out, hike on mountains, carry a stretcher. But we do have members who aren’t as active. There are roles behind the scenes. If someone is truly interested and has the time to commit, there are different skill sets we use,” Mah says.
Most of the members are people who spend time outdoors. Mah says they all know they’d want someone available to get up from the dinner table and go out to help a loved one.
Applications close on Nov. 4.