ACTIVE SUPPORTERS Group are currently looking for volunteers who may have some time to spare on their hands and would like to get involved with helping out with the search and rescue team.
The Active Supporters Group was originally formed in March 2014 with 10 members who initially joined the team to help with fundraising and public events.
Over the past four years, the supporters group has evolved and now forms an integral part of the CVSRT family with support group members involved in almost every part of team life – with the exception of emergency callouts to incidents or safety cover for certain events, where team members are required to have technical expertise and casualty care qualifications to deal with potential incidents.
So what exactly is the Active Supporters Group and what do they do?
Our Active Supporters Group members are often called upon to be casualties during training exercises.
They are placed in a remote location for the team to find and treat whatever medical condition or injury they may find during the scenario.
They are then suitably packaged and evacuated to safety. Active Supporters are also utilised during search dog training as a ‘dogsbody’, (although strictly speaking you don’t need to be an active supporter to be a ‘dogsbody’).
For those unfamiliar with the term ‘dogsbody’, it involves hiding in remote locations for the search dogs to find.
Supporters also get involved as a puppy/trainee dogsbody, which involves running around and ‘playing’ with the young dogs, so basically being the centre of the attention for the dogs.
Two of our Active Supporters, Denise and Tracy, have been dogsbodies for a number of years and Denise is also a regular dogsbody for the SARDA national training weekends.
Anna, Gillian and Janet have recently joined the grouphaving started out last year working with the dogs.
CVSRT currently has three graded search dogs and three trainee search dogs, so as you can imagine, the dogsbodies, handlers and search dogs are kept busy with two training sessions per week.
Supporters also attend the annual open days at the police and fire stations.
They help team members with kit demonstrations and showing visitors around the response vehicles.
Four of our longest serving Active Supporters also hold various officer roles within the team.
Malcolm is our Fundraising & Public Events Officer and until recently was an operational team member and was also our treasurer for a number of years.
He brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the group.
Tracy is our Archivist – a role that involves collating articles and documents and storing them electronically and physically.
She certainly had her hands full in 2016 during the 50th anniversary celebrations when we produced a booklet about the team’s history.
Tracy is also a member of our media group, which oversees all external communications that go to the press and on social media.
Sarah is our Newsletter Editor who produces a quarterly publication about the team.
This can be accessed at www.cvsrt.org.uk or sent directly to subscribers via email.
Graham is our Building Officer. He’s a massive help around the base and does all our repairs plus he was responsible for the recent installation of a new access and alarm system at the base.
So if you are interested and think being an Active supporter may be for you, pop along to our open morning on Saturday July 14, from 10am to 11.30am, and learn how you can get involved.
Venue is The Rescue Post, Thrush Hill Road, Mytholmroyd, Hebden Bridge, HX75AQ.