Mail a CheckCCVSAR
PO Box 196
Wentchee, WA 98807
CCVSAR is an exempt organization as described in Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. All or part of your gift may be tax deductible as a charitable contribution. Please check with your tax advisor. CCVSAR 501(c)(3) Determination Letter PDF Download
Every second saved can save a life
When a lost or injured person is threatened with bad weather or life-threatening injuries, time is of the essence. A well-trained and well-equipped rescue team buys us that time. Every second saved can save a life.
Originally established as part of the Chelan County Sheriff’s Office, in 2016 CCVSAR became a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. In 2016 alone, we responded to 28 incidents where someone in the backcountry was hurt, lost, or missing, and they needed potentially life-saving help. Our 60 members volunteered 3,282 hours in 2016, saving taxpayers over $77,000.
As a volunteer, non-profit organization, our funding for equipment, training, and incident response comes from members, grants, and donations from people like you.
How your donations are used
Your donation to CCVSAR makes the following possible:
Ground SAR Equipment & Training
Each CCVSAR volunteer needs training to safely and effectively respond to incidents.
Hosting and attending local and regional training program builds skills and relationships with partner organizations, which ensures a well-coordinated response to emergency incidents. Sometimes our volunteers also have to travel to other parts of the country for training and certification, and your donations help cover those travel and training costs.
When we are responding to a call for help, the right equipment is critical for supporting our volunteers and for helping to protect victims during transport.
- Training: Our regular training includes the Annual SAR Academy, the annual Washington State SAR Conference, and specialty training (such as swiftwater, avalanche, and rope rescue).
- Equipment: CCVSAR’s current needs include communications, navigation, technical rescue, and personal protective equipment (PPE), including helmets, snowshoes, microspikes, swiftwater throw bags, and life vests.
- 2 new vehicles, such as light or medium rescue trucks, that can transport a team of 4–5 responders, gear, and stretchers.
- Structural mounts so that we can securely mount a litter in the back, enabling us to more safely field transport a victim to a waiting ambulance.
- An additional transport vehicle, such as a Chevrolet Suburban.
K9 Equipment & Training
The dogs in our growing K9 unit are essential to effective, timely search and rescue operations. These dogs work hard in challenging environments and in potentially hazardous conditions. CCVSAR currently has one wilderness-certified dog working on advanced certifications for urban incidents and disasters, and we have 2 new dogs working toward certifications.
In addition to feeding our dogs a healthy diet and giving them a good place to run and rest, K9 units also need kennels, protective equipment, and other supplies, including:
- K9 Personal Protective Equipment (PPE): K9 units may be responding incidents during extreme hot or cold weather, and other hazardous conditions could make the dogs vulnerable to harm. Booties, life vests, and other equipment help us protect the dogs.
- Canine SAR training: Just like our human volunteers, the dogs in our K9 unit need training to work at their best too. Our dogs train with organizations such as FEMA. The National Search Dog Alliance (NSDA) provides training to K9 units such as ours, but we have to cover our costs for travel and other expenses.
- Canine medical insurance: Costing approximately $37 per dog per month with a $400 annual deductible, CCVSAR’s canine medical insurance helps us ensure that if a dog becomes ill or injured, we can provide proper medical care.
- K9 vehicle: Customized for use with our K9 unit, a K9 vehicle would contain the dog-specific gear and modifications needed to safely transport our rescue dogs to incident sites.
Communications & Navigation
During any rescue or emergency situation, communication is essential. Seconds count, and we are often coordinating volunteer rescuers through difficult weather conditions and across miles of rugged backcountry terrain.
As part of our efforts to update our communication and navigation equipment, we need additional:
- Radio batteries
- Satellite communicators
- GPS devices
We have also been adding real-time tracking of teams in the field. We currently have 3 trackers and want to increase that further.
Public education and awareness can decrease the risk of backcountry injury or death. Here are some of the ways we work to help the public safely enjoy the outdoors:
- Presentations at schools for children
- Safety booths at the county fair, sportsman shows, snow shows, and other trade shows
- Community events such as National Night Out, Touch A Truck, and Trick Or Treat On The Ave
- Interviews with local media
Your donation can help us buy and/or create educational materials to hand out at community events, such as safety stickers, whistles (to help rescuers locate a victim), and cards listing the “10 essentials” of backcountry gear.
Communications Vehicle Restoration & Customization
We were recently able to procure a used vehicle that will become our new communications vehicle. However, much work still needs to be done to fix up and customize this vehicle. When finished, this dedicated communications vehicle will bring all of an incident’s communication needs into one place, streamlining communication and minimizing errors. It can also help us link together all responding organizations when multiple agencies are on site, as well as enable GPS tracking and satellite communication.
We are trying to raise funds to purchase and equip a used communication vehicle, at an estimated cost of approximately $20,000.