Our purpose is to provide response and operational support to the Emergency Services in a range of situations varying from providing operational & tactical support during times of flooding or civil emergency; to attending & assisting at water-based rescue incidents; including helping to search for & rescue vulnerable people.
Our objectives state that we exist for public benefit & to train our team to relieve suffering and distress amongst persons endangered by flooding or natural hazards; as well as those in vulnerable, water-based situations.
WSART is committed to the principle of “Working Together, Saving Lives” and “being prepared to help increase resources at times of emergencies.” We are now working towards our biggest vision to date, with the aim of launching it in 2020 and as part of it we want to take up a forward-facing role in supporting a national emergency resilience voluntary team.
Some of our aims for 2020 are:
- to continue developing multi-agency working & standardisation of key procedures.
- to continue team training to ensure that we can provide the best level of specialist support during times of need.
- to help educate & promote safer lives in the UK.
To achieve these goals we have a range of plans in place encompassing in-house & external training schemes; as well as large-scale, multi-partner projects that will benefit our communities & our team.
We as a team are committed to constant learning & improvement. For example, in the autumn of 2018 over 100 volunteers will have undergone a series of nationally recognised training modules. Our volunteers are constantly raising funds for their training and for the purchase of equipment, as well as for the development of the team.
As a team, we do not charge anyone for our services and receive no funding from the government or local authority. We also do not charge our volunteers, who are trained to professional standards & who give up their annual leave and family commitments to fully undertake their operational duties as rescue team members.
Whilst all this is going on, our daily activities, including driving to recruit new members, to improve our operational capacity & maintaining the qualifications of existing members continues; as does our readiness to assist if we are called out. We have seen keen interest in 2018 and new members are coming through the system & joining our teams on an increasing basis. Our total area of coverage is also growing & we look forward to taking our team from strength to strength.
- Community First Responders are:
- volunteers, generally trained by their local ambulance service,
- tasked with reaching victims in potentially life-threatening situations before paramedics arrive.
- given the role of helping to stabilise the patient until more highly skilled ambulance crew arrive to take over the treatment.
- Co-Responders are:
- usually members of the Fire & Rescue Service, but can also be members of the public, PCSOs & members of the Coastguard/RNLI.
- trained in basic life support, based around resuscitation & defibrillation.
- trained & certified/re-certified by their local ambulance service.
- tasked with stabilising patients in a similar way to CFRs.
More information about our teams & which type of responder scheme they are linked to will be available in the new year.