Funding for ground search and rescue groups will make the backcountry safer say NDP MLAs Fleming and Dean

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VICTORIA – New Democrat MLAs Rob Fleming and Mitzi Dean say annual funding from the provincial government will help ensure that Ground Search and Rescue (GSAR) groups and their volunteers are there when people need help in the backcountry.

“Whether it is camping, hiking, or other outdoor activities, residents of the South Island and visitors from around the world enjoy our forested areas and trails every day,” says Rob Fleming, MLA for Victoria-Swan Lake. “Our government is funding the important work of these search and rescue organizations.”

The Metchosin Search and Rescue team and the Peninsula Emergency Measures Organization Search and Rescue, will each receive their share of $6 million from the province through funding to the BC Search and Rescue Association (BCSARA) with the average distribution amount being approximately $63,000 per group.

“When people find themselves in trouble in the outdoors, our search and rescue organizations get them the help they need,” said Mitzi Dean, MLA for Metchosin. “I’m glad that our government is investing in critical services for these two amazing groups.”

Funding will support lifesaving rescue equipment, essential training, protective equipment for volunteers and administration costs, such as insurance.

This is the second year of this annual funding agreement between the province and BCSARA, which is the only agreement of its kind in Canada.

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