Health, disability & well-being

Funding level: £10,001 to £25,000


Most people are probably aware of Mountain Rescue - the specialist teams that search for, and rescue, injured or stranded walkers and climbers - but there are no mountains in Kent, so it doesn't have a Search and Rescue team, does it? Actually, it does. Kent Search and Rescue (KSAR) is the county's very own Lowland Rescue team. Lowland Rescue teams essentially do everything that their Mountain Rescue cousins do, but instead of mountains, it's open land, woods and forests; beaches, rivers, lakes and streams; residential and industrial buildings and roads; "from hill to high water".

Is a Search and Rescue team really necessary in Kent? Well, every year, around 9500 people are reported to Kent Police as "missing". Those that are classed as "vulnerable" - for example, children; elderly, confused, depressed or suicidal people; those living with dementia or Alzheimer's; or victims of crime - will be in need of urgent help and it's KSAR that is called upon to locate these "mispers" and give appropriate medical attention, before transferring them to a place of safety. KSAR also has specialist flood rescue teams and equipment and is on-call to evacuate stranded people from their homes every winter.

Kent Search and Rescue is ALWAYS available, 24/7/365 (or 366 in a leap year), and is called-out around 80 times each year, with the total currently standing at 785. KSAR now has around 130 volunteers and uses several different search tactics including foot teams, search dogs, vehicle, boat and bike teams.

Effective searching isn't the random wandering around so often seen on TV - it is a skillfully planned operation using extensive research on missing person characteristics, combined with specific information about the actual missing person. For each search, KSAR's Search Planners use this information, along with detailed maps of the area, to calculate the best search strategy and deploy appropriate resources to the areas "most likely" to contain the missing person. The situation is continually reassessed and other teams are deployed as necessary until the person is found and returned to safety.

If this funding project gets enough votes to win, the purchase and conversion of a Mercedes Sprinter van, at a cost of £25,000, would give Kent Search & Rescue a fully equipped Search Planning Vehicle to replace the ageing, unreliable vehicle in current use.

So, how much does this virtually unknown emergency service cost everyone? Well, amazingly, it costs absolutely NOTHING! Kent Search and Rescue is a Registered Charity (no.1091181) and their dedicated, highly-trained members are all unpaid volunteers. They train and practise constantly, at their own expense, to be ready to serve whenever the need arises. No wages, no expenses. KSAR is funded completely by kind donations from the people and businesses of Kent.

"100% Volunteer, 100% Professional".

Project Video

Kent Search & Rescue

Moment of Pride

Proud holder of the Queen's Award for Voluntary Service (the MBE for volunteer groups), KSAR is a completely free resource for Kent Police, KCC and the people of Kent and is there to find "vulnerable" missing people - those whose lives often depend on being found quickly. One day it could be you...

Location: Kent, United Kingdom