COSAR receives financial help, adds 2 new medical members

File photo of a COSAR rescue. COSAR / Facebook

It’s been a good news week for Central Okanagan Search and Rescue, with a physician and nurse joining the team and a real-estate company lending a financial hand.

The addition of the two medical members will now bring COSAR’s staff tally to 51 active personnel. The non-profit agency says it will also implement weekly medical training.

“As the demands of our tasks continue to escalate, Central Okanagan Search and Rescue remains committed to enhancing the capabilities of our team,” it said.

Click to play video: 'Rescue along forest service roads increase'
Rescue along forest service roads increase

The last four years have been extremely busy for COSAR, which normally responds to around 60 callouts a year.

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Last year, COSAR had 89 callouts, with 84 in 2022. In 2021, the organization set a record with 107 callouts, up from 86 in 2020.

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Further, July 2023 was the organization’s busiest month with 18 callouts alone.

COSAR says it will be hosting a recruitment drive in the fall, and that all skill sets are needed, from outdoor to mechanical to inner-board workings of non-profit agencies.

Regarding the financial commitment, COSAR says the Callahan Property Group has pledged $75,000 over the next three years.

“Their initial contribution of $25,000 has been allocated towards advanced medical training, procurement of medical supplies, and acquisition of essential equipment,” COSAR said.

Click to play video: 'Inside look at SAR training'
Inside look at SAR training

“Our backcountry is beautiful and vast and to be shared with our community and visitors alike,” company spokesperson Bruce Callahan said.

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“It is reassuring that the Okanagan has a capable and skilled team in place to assist when help is needed.”

“Financial support from the community is essential in helping our team provide the necessary resources to our subjects,” COSAR president Brad Trites added.

“The funding provided by Bob, Bruce and the rest of the team at Callahan Property Group will have a significant positive impact on our subjects.”

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