Thank you for your interest in joining the charity. We are running a fast-track entry programme in January 2017, and the following pages contain information you will need to know in order to successfully complete that programme.
You will be training to become an operational land-search technician, deployed by the team on behalf of West Mercia Police to find high-risk missing people. You must be as professional as the Police in attitude, and always protect the vulnerable people we work with. You must not discuss live searches with anyone outside the team, even if asked.
You will need to pass a Police security check.
You should also realise that the charity needs to fundraise in order to exist. A number of fundraising events per year must be attended on top of your training and callouts.
The reality of Lowland Rescue
The type of search and rescue the team engages in for West Mercia Police is Lowland Rescue. We analyse the circumstances surrounding vulnerable people going missing and we search the most likely places for them to be found. When we find them, we deal with the situation accordingly; first-aid, mental-health first-aid or crime-scene preservation if they’re dead.
It is not glamourous. You won’t get medals or fame, and typically those who join the team to get a rush leave fairly soon. We can guarantee that your efforts will help vulnerable people, their families and friends, but the only reward you will get is a sense of self-satisfaction.
And you need to be aware of what an impact this will have on YOUR family. Searches can take place at any time, so you will lose a few evenings and weekends over the year. If that will cause too much stress on your family, then let us know and we can offer you a support role.
The fast-track entry programme includes a weekend’s residential course with a specialist training facility in Bewdley. This costs £70 and is non-refundable.
You will need a baseplate compass. We recommend the Silva Expedition 4 or similar.
You will need sturdy footwear with ankle-support, a waterproof jacket and a pocket notebook (very important) and a larger notebook for classroom training.
You will also need a bright search torch and a backpack. We recommend that IF you don’t already own these, then you wait and take advantage of a team discount at a later date. The team gets various discounts direct from manufacturers for equipment.
Dates and locations for training will be announced in the next 2 weeks.
Please download and read the document named
WMSAR Membership Information Pack v12
and sign the last two pages – bring these to the first meeting.
Please also familiarise yourself with the Standard Operating Procedure. This will be explained and become clearer as your training progresses; we do not expect you to fully understand it before your training commences.
First Meeting – what to expect
Please bring your driving licence.
Please bring a notebook and pen.
Please bring cash or a cheque for £70, made payable to West Mercia Search & Rescue, to cover the cost of your residential training weekend.
The day will comprise of a presentation on what the charity and team does, then small group talks about you, your expectations, what you can bring to the team, and what to expect from your training. The day will be a chance to meet members of the team and discuss their own involvement.
At the end of the day we will ask for a yes/no commitment to continuing the programme.
Please bring the two signed pages of the Membership Information Pack v12.
If so, please email Andy