Since 1954 Central Okanagan Search and Rescue has been providing Kelowna and the surrounding area with a team of highly trained volunteers committed to helping those that need assistance in both the backcountry and urban environments.

The team consists of approximately 50 dedicated volunteers from all walks of life who are on call 24/7, 365 days a year. Averaging over 100 call outs per year, team members gladly give up family dinners, Christmas mornings, and a good nights sleep so that others may live.

The team’s training covers technical skills such as advanced first aid, high angle rope rescue, wilderness and urban ground search, helicopter rescue, and swift water rescue.

COSAR provides services to:


The Central Okanagan Search and Rescue traces its roots back to an incident that occurred in 1954. It was during this time when a young girl on a family camping trip wandered away from her site.

It quickly became apparent that there was no trained or organized group available to search for this child; consequently a band of people, coming from the existing BC Civil Defense Volunteers in the community, initiated the search and Kelowna Search and Rescue was formed.

These caring individuals who searched that day, and eventually found the small child, recognized the need for an established Search and Rescue and they would become the core nucleus of the Central Okanagan Search and Rescue – now the oldest organized Search and Rescue group of its kind in B.C.

In 1997, Kelowna Search and Rescue and Westbank Search and Rescue amalgamated, and Central Okanagan Search and Rescue was formed.