The Saanich Emergency Program recognizes the heart of response: their volunteers

April 17, 2023

News release
For immediate release


The Saanich Emergency Program recognizes the heart of response: their volunteers

Saanich, BC – The Saanich Emergency Program (SEP) celebrates National Volunteer Week from April 16-22, recognizing the dedication and commitment of its volunteers. With over 85 members, SEP’s volunteers are a diverse team with a shared desire to support their community. Many volunteers have served with SEP for several years and some have served for several decades.

“We are so grateful for our volunteers,” said Deputy Fire Chief Brock Henson. “Their commitment, knowledge and enthusiasm make a positive difference in the community and help make Saanich more resilient. They contribute in so many ways and are a crucial component to the success of our program.”

Benefits to volunteering

There are many benefits to volunteering with SEP. Our volunteers consistently mention that they gain a stronger sense of connection with the community through their volunteer work. There are diverse roles and opportunities for a variety of skill sets, and training is provided to help volunteers learn new skills and apply the abilities and strengths they already have. Volunteers also learn about personal preparedness and how to support others during an emergency or disaster.

Do you love to coordinate, help those in need and connect with your neighbours? There are lots of exciting positions available in Emergency Radio Communications, the Neighbourhood Emergency Preparedness Program and with Emergency Support Services.

Quick facts

  • SEP is a division of the Saanich Fire Department, supporting municipal efforts to prepare for, respond to and recover from major emergencies and disasters in the community.
  • When a Saanich resident is evacuated from their home and requires support, volunteers are there to help. These events can be as small as a house fire or as large as a community evacuation. SEP has volunteers on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days per year. 
  • Emergency Program volunteers responded to three callouts in the first 57 days of 2023. The largest being a gas leak where 24 SEP volunteers responded to set up a comfort centre for those evacuated from the area. The community is fortunate to have dedicated and skilled responders willing to give their time and expertise.
  • Volunteers deliver emergency preparedness presentations each month and by request for groups of 10 or more. These presentations have supported thousands of Saanich residents to become more prepared. The next presentation is scheduled for Tuesday, May 16, 7 p.m. at Saanich Commonwealth Place. Register by calling 250-475-7600.
  • Emergency Program volunteers attend over 16 Saanich-based summer public events to promote preparedness, dedicating more than 200 hours of their time. In addition to these events, volunteers support the Grade 4 Emergency Preparedness Program, delivering 30 presentations to over 1100 students in 24 Saanich schools.

Find out more

More information about the Saanich Emergency Program and how to volunteer is available on or on Twitter: @SaanichEP and @SaanichFire. An information session for those interested in volunteering will be held at Pearkes Recreation Centre on Tuesday, May 30 at 7 p.m. Register by calling 250-475-5400.


Media contact:
Captain Erin Stockill, Emergency Program Officer
Saanich Fire Department