The 2018 hurricane season has been extraordinarily active in parts of the U.S., with Hurricane Florence currently impacting millions in the Carolinas. As this natural disaster unfolds, the staff here at VolunteerMatch is doing its part to ensure that, if you are in an affected community, you are prepared and safe. And if you are looking to help with disaster relief efforts, you know about the most effective ways to contribute.
Atlantic Life Safety & Emergency Services is currently accepting applications for Volunteer Members to join our Search & Rescue (SAR) Team. If you are interested in giving back to your community and helping those in distress, we urge you to consider joining ALSES SAR and become a fully trained and deployable SAR Member.
Must be 18 or older (Explorer Members are accepted at age 16 with parental consent).
All field operations team members must meet or exceed National Association Search and Rescue (NASAR) certifications standards. We train our members internally to meet this requirement.
All members are background-checked.
Each deployable member must have a minimum certification in basic First Aid and CPR. We train our members using American Heart Association's CPR/ECC courses. (First Responders, EMTs, and Paramedics are always welcome.)
Our bylaws require that members maintain necessary training hours in order to provide the safest and highest level of expertise.
While outdoor experience is not required, you do need to be in good physical shape to be a field operations member. If you unable to serve as a field operations member, we also assist with base camp and administrative functions.
All team members are required to supply and maintain their own equipment. The equipment list appears long and expensive, but we find many people have most of what's on the list at home. If you find that you don't have everything we require, please don't let that stop you from applying to join our team. We'll let you know ahead of time what things are critical and which things you can wait to get.
We are an active team and we will require alot of time if you join. Your first year will be especially busy with training and testing on top of normal team functions. This requires a high level of commitment.
Before joining, you should know...
Before you decide to sign up as a search and rescue (SAR) team member, there are some things about SAR work we would like you to know. The following list of SAR-related issues isn't meant to scare you away or discourage you from joining our team. We simply want to make sure you have as much information as possible before making this type of commitment.
We are a volunteer organization. We do not get paid for our work.
SAR work can be the most unforgiving, ungrateful, unappreciated work you've ever not been paid for. You can spend days on a search for someone you might never find, or who might not even say thank you. SAR work can also be the most rewarding thing you ever do.
Each member is responsible for providing his or her own gear (with the exception of radios, Stokes Litter, and other team equipment.)
We train and search in all types of weather, temperatures, and terrain--both day and night.
We search for all kinds of situations: missing hikers, hunters, children, Alzheimer's patients, suicide victims, body recoveries, and more. We also do evidence searches including those for human remains. You always have the option of not going on any particular callout, but we want you to know up front that we do a lot more than just find missing hikers.
Membership is not always a quick process. There are a number of requirements that must be met before you are allowed to participate in real missions. Your personal motivation level will dictate your progress and ALSES does impose reasonable time limits to become field ready.