Norwegian Sea Rescue Society

Our aim is to save lives, also by changing attitudes and behaviours towards sea safety. Our main target groups are children and youngsters. These groups are important, because attitudes develop over time and children can influence their parents positively. 

At the same time we do put effort into the most exposed risk groups, which are men above 40 years old and fishing tourists. The total number of drownings in 2011 was 69 persons. Around 30 of these drown from leisure boats each year.

Ninety per cent are men and 3-4 are supposed to be fishing tourists. Six out of ten do not use a safety jacket. This shows the importance of starting early with education and information  – and keep on reminding. 

Children are the future, and of course also important as to secure recruitment for our SAR acitivities, as future members, supporters and funders. Bonding and building life long loyalty.

Teaching the Young to be Sensible at Sea

We communicate sensible behaviour at sea to many thousands of children and young people every year.

These activities include organising summer camps for youngsters aged 14-17 years, which includes taking the certificate of boatmanship.

We run schools to teach boat sense to 9 to 12 year-olds, with the aim of promoting appropriate attitudes and creating a sense of community.

Youngsters spend a full week experiencing and learning to master life at sea and on boats. So that we can secure a certain level of members and build loyalty from an early age; all youth who take courses in RS, are invited  to be members.

Every year we organize sensible boating days nationwide for primary/secondary school pupils both in collaboration with the Norwegian Maritime Directorate and other. These events educate several thousands of children in behaving sensibly at sea, practical seamanship and environmental protection. 

Elias Teaches Sea Sense to the Youngest

Our Elias Club is aimed at the very smallest children and seeks to give them a positive and secure relationship with being in, by and on the water.

Our ambition is that the club’s website will be the leading communicator of sensible behaviour at sea to the youngest Norwegians, on their own terms. 

We participate every year with our Elias boats in many events along the whole coast. This gives several thousands of small children the pleasure of operating a genuine Elias boat. They also learn the 10 Elias rules on the environment, nature and sea sense and how to use a lifejacket properly. Each year we arrange a competition for all first grade pupils in Norway, through funding. They draw, make songs or small films. The best classes are rewarded with safety jackets and a few are then chosen to join a SAR vessel for one day. 

Youth Volunteer Groups 

The Norwegian Rescue Society has volunteer youth groups all over the country (14-26 years). They do training such as boat driver license, navigation at night, safety course, diving, life saving, leader and instructor training, engine knowledge, etc. 

The groups arrange boating days and other activities for younger children. They also arrange courses and activities in their local community both to educate and to spread knowledge about our charity and important contribution to the society. Two of our youth groups have organized boating days for foreigners at reception centers. We have one youth group with orphans and refugees from different countries.

Here we cooperate with Trondheim municipality. For a few other groups we have cooperation with the local schools.

The first youth group was established in 2009. The aim is also to recruit youth as responsible for activities such as summer school, camps, attending events, arranging courses, etc. We also hope that youth group members can be a recruitment basis for our volunteer crews. The SAR crews are important role models and coaches for the young groups.

We do also have local volunteer groups run by parents for the very small children – the so-called Elias groups. They do mostly water and boating activities within the groups. These are spin-offs of the Elias club. 

Informative and Interactive Safety Material

NSSR has developed practical, informative and interactive safety material. The aim is to reach as many as possible through kindergarten and school, and at the same time make the  task as easy and fun as possible for the teachers. We have web sites for Eliasklubben (, and for our youth ( The interactive e-learning concept Stormvik is used at school (5-7. Grade).   

The schools have to sign up to use the program, but it is for free. 

The pedagogical concept for kindergartens, Lillevik, is new in 2012 and will be offered to all kindergartens at self-cost. This concept consists of some main animal characters and exciting stories about how to behave at sea/water and towards each other, a CD with songs, sea-food-recipies, information about the NSSR, etc. 

NSSR produce two member magazines four times a year – one for our young members (Young at sea/Ung til sjøs) and one for adult members (Safe at sea/Trygg på sjøen). In 2011 we started with an electronic newsletter eight times a year to our adult members. 

NSSR do have one official facebook site. In addition there are several other facebook sites run by youth groups and others. Social medias is an important channel for education and information, which we have not fully explored- yet. 

Courses and Training

We place great emphasis on offering courses and training to high professional and educational standards. Offered courses are boatmanship training, night navigation, VHF etc. Boatmanship training is also offered on the web. 

We also do invite members to special evenings about useful information on boat equipment, maintenance, navigation, etc.; often in cooperation with our own crew or boat equipment dealers.

Our boatmanship courses are aimed particularly at young people and women, and we have developed teaching forms and contence suited for these target groups.

Examples include a young persons’ camp with certificate of boatmanship, the “Take the Rudder, Woman” programme for women, and weekend and company courses.

We have our own Sea Rescue Education Centre, where our crews hone their skills in driving fast boats and qualify through training and exercises on safety, first aid and sea rescue. The NSSR Education Centre does also train several private and public maritime organizations such as ferry companies and coastal airport staff.

NSSR Education Presentation 2011

Visit the NSSR website.