Important dates

2022/2023 Intake

2022/2023 Application deadline: September 30, 2022

2022/2023 Extension/Course change requests: April 1, 2024

2022/2023 Course completion: May 31, 2024

2022/2023 Reporting document deadlines: June 30, 2024

2021/2022 Intake

2021/2022 Extension/Course change requests: April 1, 2023

2021/2022 Course completion: May 31, 2023

2021/2022 Reporting document deadlines: June 30, 2023

Overview

The Ground Search and Rescue Program (GSAR) provides funding to support:

  • increased training for technical rescue and ground search and rescue personnel
  • increasing the skills and capability of technical rescue and ground search and rescue personnel

Key outcomes of the program include:

  • increasing the capability of Alberta’s search and rescue communities to respond to ground and inland searches
  • enhancing Alberta’s system for managing emergencies

For more information, read the most recent Ground Search and Rescue: Program Guidelines.

Funding

Grant allocation will be dependent on:

  • the alignment to the objectives of the program
  • the number of participating stakeholders
  • the benefit to the region in terms of improving the safety system

Funding is made as a lump-sum payment for the eligible course, exercise or workshop.

Funding requirements

To receive funds, you, your group or organization must:

  • have met all conditions of any previous grants that your group/organization received
  • agree to cover any costs over and above the grant
  • apply by the deadline by submitting an application, including any letters of participation and/or collaboration

Eligible entities

Eligible entities include Ground Search and Rescue and technical rescue groups/organizations serving Albertans that are affiliated with Search and Rescue Alberta.

Ineligible entities

Ineligible entities include:

  • groups/organizations that do not have a current proof of registration under the Alberta Societies Act
  • groups/organizations that did not meet previous years’ compliance requirements

Eligible project costs

The following courses and activities are eligible for funding:

Search and rescue leadership and management

Table 1. SAR leadership and management courses and activities

Course NameCourse Description
2-day Team LeaderSAR-trained and experienced volunteers learn the necessary management skills to lead and conduct the resources during a search.
2-day SAR Search Manager RecertificationThis refresher course focusing on initial response is a priority course. Teams in regions are encouraged to train together and to bring in their local police to participate in this course. Participation is limited to certified Search Managers.
Tabletop ExerciseExercises focusing on SAR management in a regional or multi-team participation.
Provincial ExerciseLive exercise utilizing resources typically involved in SAR activities. This exercise has resources from across the province.
5-day Search ManagerSAR trained and experienced volunteers learn the necessary management skills to lead and conduct a search.
Train the TrainerParticipants learn to teach the basic entry level search and rescue skills and theory.

SAR skills

Table 2. SAR skills courses and activities

Course NameCourse Description
All terrain vehicle or Utility Task Vehicle Safety CourseIn accordance with Canada Safety Council Standard
Boating CourseIn accordance with Canada Safety Council Standard
Snowmobile CourseIn accordance with Canada Safety Council Standard
Man-trackingParticipants learn to use clues and evidence left behind by the missing person(s).
Global positioning system TrainingAs applicable to course, but application must include an explanation of the course required, number of attendees anticipated, and substantiation of the requirement.
SAR Searcher CourseParticipants learn the basic entry-level search and rescue skills and theory.
Alberta Occupational Health & Safety Standards and RequirementsParticipants learn to develop, introduce and maintain approved OH&S practices.

Rescue skills

Table 3. Rescue skills courses and activities

Course NameCourse Description
Wilderness First AidBasic and/or advanced course. Wilderness First Aid at the St. John’s Ambulance or Red Cross level includes a recertification for Basic First Aid/CPR/AED.
Swift Water RescueAs applicable to course, but application must include an explanation of the course required, number of attendees anticipated, and substantiation of the requirement.
Rope RescueNFPA 1006 or British Columbia Cave Standard. Application must include an explanation of the course required, number of attendees anticipated, and substantiation of the requirement.
Standard First AidIn accordance with the Red Cross or
St. John’s Ambulance curriculum. See also Wilderness First Aid above.
Specialized TechnicalAs applicable to course, but application must include an explanation of the course required, number of attendees anticipated, and substantiation of the requirement.

Ineligible project costs

Ineligible project costs include:

  • capital or equipment purchases, upgrades or repairs
  • training carried out before the minister signs the conditional grant agreement
  • paid on – call volunteers in a capacity as an instructor
  • student wages, travel, meals or subsistence

How to apply

PDF form issues

Fillable PDF forms do not open properly on some mobile devices and web browsers. To fill in and save the form:

  1. Save the PDF form to your computer – click or right-click the link and download the form.
  2. Open the PDF form with Adobe Reader. Fill it in and save it.

If you are still having problems opening the form, contact PDF form technical support.

Step 1. Read the most recent program guidelines

Step 2. Complete the application form

Step 3. Submit the application package

All applications must be received by the September 30, 2022 deadline.

Mail or email your application form and current proof of registration under the Alberta Societies Act to:

Provincial Search and Rescue Program
Public Security Division
Alberta Public Safety and Emergency Services
10 Floor, John E. Brownlee Building
10365 97 Street NW
Edmonton, Alberta  T5J 3W7
Email: [email protected]

How applications are evaluated

Application criteria

Applications are evaluated on history of past training received, the detailed training plan included in the application and regional training needs.

There is an emphasis on teams working together in regions (as much as geography allows). Applications that benefit multiple stakeholders and provide maximum benefit to the Alberta public safety system will get priority.

Successful applicants

Applicants will be notified by March 31, 2023 whether their application was successful. To receive funding, the president and treasurer of the search and rescue group/organization must sign the conditional grant agreement (CGA).

After the Minister or their representative signs the CGA, training can start.

The minister’s decisions regarding grant funding are final.

Reporting requirements

2020/2021 Reporting documents are due June 30, 2022.

2021/2022 Reporting documents are due June 30, 2023.

2022/2023 Reporting documents are due June 30, 2024.

Use the GSAR Reporting Form to help fill out your reporting requirements.

Extensions and changes

Extension or change requests must be received prior to April 1, 2024.

You must get authorization from the Provincial Search and Rescue Program for any material changes to your grant, like:

  • budget
  • schedule
  • training plan

Email: [email protected] to obtain a time extension or course change authorization.

Contact

Connect with the Provincial Search and Rescue Program:
Email: [email protected]