Ben Ward – Search and Rescue, 3SC and Me!
The newest recruit to the 3SC Team is Ben Ward, Ben joins us with a wealth of experience and is already providing lots of operational support in his role as Delivery Coordinator.
Ben kindly agreed to tell us a bit about himself and some of the amazing work he does in his spare time too.
COVID-19 presented challenges and dictated change for most of us in one way or another; I was no exception to this. For me, a complete change in career, lifestyle to some degree and financial impacts aplenty; at the time it was the worst possible hand to be dealt but on reflection, positive things come from it and are still coming my way. Two ‘standout’ changes being a career with 3SC and the other being a qualified Search and Rescue Technician. Two great achievements! Both have delivered a lift in my happiness and benefits to me as an individual.
During COVID I was made redundant, the same day my partner was too. A double whammy! I then became an Employment Advisor which equipped me with skills and experiences within employability, health, well-being and support interventions. I then stumbled across 3SC and here I am… Without the initial redundancy I dare say I wouldn’t have become an Employment Advisor and placed 357 people into sustainable employment over 19 months and in turn, wouldn’t have actively seeked a strong and ethical Organisation such as 3SC – it’s highly possible I would still be in the same role and on 10 plus years’ service.
During 2021, I felt I had capacity to “do something different” and I wanted to make a positive change and support those who most needed it; I had skills and experiences that could be utilised and executed within a project, a role or an organisation that wanted to embrace that… After some research, discussion, and consideration I decided I wanted to go for a ‘Search and Rescue Technician’ post, I subsequently put my name down and waited in anticipation.
February 2022, the ball started rolling in the form of an “Induction & Selection Day” with Bucks Search and Rescue… Swiftly bypassing the next 3 months which entailed intensive training, I qualified as a Search and Rescue Technician during May 2022; arguably one of my proudest achievements owing to the level of impact you have on those most vulnerable.
Bucks a Search and Rescue (known as BSAR) is a voluntary organisation; with every single Team member being volunteers – from Search Technicians to Administrative Staff to Operational Support!
BSAR operate 24/7, 365 days per year and we solely rely upon public donations and grants to remain Operational and on-call, ready to deploy and support the Police, the MISPER (Missing Person) & in turn their friends and family.
We are called out by the Police or other Search and Rescue Teams to assist in searching for high risk, vulnerable missing people. Employing the skills we learned around Communication, Search Skills, Navigation, Crime Scene Management, Medical to name a few. We search for Children, those that are suicidal or despondent, suffering with Dementia or poor Mental Health and those that have Autism, ADHD or other Neurodiverse conditions. Also supporting local authorities with emergency situations including flooding.
Since becoming Operational in May 2022, I have developed within BSAR and enhanced my capabilities; I am a Foot Searcher, Bank Searcher, Bike Searcher, Trainee Team Leader, Callout Dispatcher and Trustee. Each role serves a purpose and all of them extracts different skills and ignites areas of interests within me.
Working in collaboration with my team and extended colleagues is something I cherish; we are highly trained to enable interoperability, professional communication with high-ranking Officers that exercise followership. Every sector we search, adds value to the operation, ruling out where the MISPER is or is not; each callout response plays a significant part.
I genuinely feel so fortunate to be involved with two organisations that support me the way they do. By doing so they are supporting each-other. A perfect example of unity and three parties having the same mission, values, morals; it has created a mutually rewarding and successful system; additionally, both organisations strive to support people, including Neurodiverse individuals and for me to be able to deliver in both settings provides immeasurable satisfaction.
The moral to this; no matter how tricky a situation is, how difficult something may be, there is light at the end of the tunnel and positive change is round the corner. Do not be afraid to ask for support, that shows courage and strength and nothing less. You must do one thing; never give up.
Ben Ward, Delivery Co-Ordinator | 3SC