Canadian Red Cross volunteer Deb Chmara listens to the stories of evacuees from Williams Lake while she helps them at the registration centre in Kamloops. Submitted photo

Castlegar emergency service group looking for volunteers

Volunteers work with both the provincial emergency service program and the Red Cross.

Castlegar’s Emergency Support Services/Red Cross (ESS) team is looking for volunteers.

ESS director Deb Chmara, who has spent more than 50 years with the organization, says that some recent retirements have left vacancies in the organization that oversees support services for those needing to leave their homes due to emergencies.

RELATED: Castlegar volunteer marks 50 years with Red Cross

In the last four months, the group has provided services for the Talbott Creek fire evacuation alert, the Crawford Bay and Broadwater Road floods and four house fires. Earlier this year, they also provided remote help with a fire in Squamish.

The Castlegar team is a little unique, with volunteers serving both the Red Cross and B.C. Government Emergency Support Services program.

The dual role allows for continuity between the first 72 hours after an evacuation where the provincial ESS program provides services and the continued services offered after that by the Red Cross.

“Our team is a good team, the volunteers are really committed,” said Chmara.

The biggest need is for case work volunteers — the people who meet with evacuees to determine what kind of supports are needed.

Chmara says volunteers need to understand that there will be training and expectations that must be met for both the ESS and Red Cross roles.

An orientation session will lay out just what volunteers can expect before they make a final decision and sign up.

Ideally the group would like to add at least six more team members and has a particular need for more male volunteers.

General duty volunteers are also needed to help with things like pet care, child care and administrative tasks.

If you are interested in getting involved, call the organization at 250-304-3194.

READ MORE: Upgrades coming to Castlegar’s Emergency Operations Centre

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Katrine Conroy has won for the fifth time in the Kootenay West riding. Photo: Submitted
Katrine Conroy ready to tackle challenges after election

Conroy won the Kootenay West riding for the fifth time

Students at Stanley Humphries will be staging Nightmare on Seventh. L-R Emily Conley and Claire Cartwright are all dressed up and ready to go. Photo: Jennifer Small
Zombie apocalypse coming to Castlegar

High school students staging scary food drive

A view of the Burton Flats area. Photo: Submitted
Work progresses on man-made wetland near Burton

The project is already seeing modest results

Katrine Conroy
Katrine Conroy declared winner in Kootenay West

Preliminary results put NDP candidate firmly in the lead.

There are few details but neighbours a Second Avenue house in Chilliwack say a huge police presence descended on the home after shots were heard. (File photo)
RCMP looking for witnesses in $5000 auto part theft

Two catalytic converters valued around $5000 were taken Oct. 22

FILE – Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry provides the latest update on the COVID-19 pandemic in the province during a press conference in the press theatre at Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Thursday, October 22, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. shatters COVID-19 records with 817 weekend cases; masks now expected indoors

Three people have died over the past three reporting periods

A nurse performs a test on a patient at a drive-in COVID-19 clinic in Montreal, on Wednesday, October 21, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Interior Health sees 31 new cases of COVID-19 over record-breaking weekend

Eighty-six cases remain active and one person is hospitalized with the virus

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

RCMP have released more details regarding what led up to an arrest caught on video in Williams Lake Sunday, Oct. 26. (Facebook video screenshot)
Review launched after ‘high-risk, multi-jurisdictional’ chase, arrest in Williams Lake

RCMP launching a full review and code of conduct investigation

B.C. limits events in private homes to household, plus ‘safe six’ amid COVID-19 surge

Henry issued a public health order limiting private gatherings to one household, plus a group of ‘safe six’ only

B.C. Liberal Leader Andrew Wilkinson speaks during a drive-in car rally campaign stop at a tour bus operator, in Delta, Saturday, Oct. 17, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Andrew Wilkinson stepping down as B.C. Liberal leader

Will stay on until the next party leader is chosen

VicPD and B.C. Conservation Officer Service teamed up to free two bucks who were entangled in a fishing net and dragging a wheelbarrow sized piece of driftwood behind them. (VicPD)
VIDEO: Police, B.C. Conservation help two bucks caught in one fishing net

Bucks were also dragging a wheelbarrow sized piece of driftwood behind them

Most Read