Want to join Search and Rescue?

There are very few full-time careers in Search and Rescue in New Zealand. Organisations such as the NZ Police and NZ Fire Service have some limited options. 95% of the Search and Rescue sector in NZ are volunteers.

There are three general types of search and rescue: land, marine and air.

Volunteers are less common in the air environment due to the extremely high levels of training required to operate SAR aircraft effectively. There are, however, many opportunities to volunteer for the land and marine environments.

Three of the key volunteer response organisations appear below. Click on each of their logos to learn more about how to become involved.
Information from the NZSAR Strategic Plan 2014-16. More info at nzsar.org.nz


LandSAR volunteers operate in a wide variety of area's including alpine, bush, urban and even underground in caves. There are also some who specialise in areas such as working with dogs, communications and in base support.

Click on their logo to learn more.


Coastguard is made up of more than 2,500 dedicated active volunteers and has 75 dedicated search and rescue vessels in its fleet, two small fixed wing single engine aircraft, and access to aeroclub aircraft at nine locations from Kerikeri to Invercargill.

Click on their logo to learn more.

Surf Life Saving

Surf Life Saving is one of the leading water safety organisation in New Zealand. SLSNZ has been providing Surf Lifesaving services to New Zealand communities for nearly 100 years.
There are 71 Surf Life Saving Clubs throughout New Zealand, stretching from Ahipara in the North to Oreti in the South.

Click on their logo to learn more.

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