• To serve our community in times of disaster.


As the Auxiliary Communications Service (ACS) organization for Calgary and area, including communities in Alberta’s Census Division 6, we:

  • Organize and train volunteers to serve their communities in disaster communications.
  • Advance the development and application of amateur radio technologies.
  • Advocate for coordination and collaboration among ARES/ACS teams regionally, provincially, and nationally.
  • To work together as an amateur radio community, striving to build relationships with local ham radio clubs, served agencies and communities before disaster strikes.
  • Encourage every member to get involved, get prepared, and continuously improve.


ACS CALGARY’s values are the foundation of how we achieve our mission, how we conduct ourselves, and how we interact with each other.

  • Members – ACS CALGARY values all its members and recognizes their contributions: time, knowledge, skills, equipment, and passion for community service.
  • Inclusiveness – ACS CALGARY is not a club and welcomes any certified amateur regardless of whether they are affiliated with a club or not. Furthermore, we welcome certified amateurs with any skill level possessing any equipment. 
  • Engagement – Our preparedness relies on our relationship with other ARES/ACS groups, local ham radio clubs, served agencies and communities before disasters occur. Like iron sharpens iron, by working together, learning together, and preparing together we continuously improve and build the foundation of a successful response.
  • Knowledge & Expertise – We encourage skills development and the pursuit of applied amateur radio technologies through lifelong learning and training.
  • Excellence – We encourage and support high standards in all aspects of emergency communications, including technological innovation, operating practice and etiquette, safety, regulatory compliance, and servant leadership.
  • Integrity – We act honestly, openly, and ethically. We maintain the highest level of integrity and professionalism.  We humbly serve our community in times of need.

(Thank you to the ARRL for their inspiration as we developed our own ACS CALGARY Mission, Vision and Values). http://www.arrl.org/arrl-strategic-plan

What is ACS?

ACS (previously known as ARES or ARES/ACS) is a public service organization that delivers communications services during emergencies, disasters or in support of public events.

  • ARES: “Amateur Radio Emergency Service” (Pronounced AIR-EEZ.)
  • ACS: “Auxiliary Communications Service” ** See update at bottom of page.

The major roles played by ACS organizations typically include:

  • Mitigation of telecommunications failures
  • Supplementary telecommunications support or augmentation
  • Command and control level interoperability (for example, communications from a command post to an Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) and between EOCs.
  • Special assignments such as observation and reporting

Please see RAC documentation for more information.

Every certified Radio Amateur, whether or not a member of RAC or any other local or regional organization, is eligible for membership in the Auxiliary Communications Service. The only qualification is a sincere desire to serve. The possession of emergency-powered equipment is desirable but not a requirement.

Any and all use of the RAC Amateur Emergency Service & Design trademark requires a call sign or permission from Radio Amateurs of Canada, Inc.

Taken directly from the Radio Amateurs of Canada Website https://www.rac.ca/ares/

UPDATE: 2023-07-27

The new RAC Auxiliary Communications Service (ACS) – which has assumed the original function of the RAC Amateur Radio Emergency Service (RAC ARES) – recognizes that disaster response management and telecommunication standards are now mandated by Canadian federal, provincial and territorial legislation and regulations and by international agreements.

While the focus of non-government organizations continues to be disaster relief operations, the role of the new RAC Auxiliary Communications Service is to provide certified communications operators to supplement communications for local emergency management groups and non-government organizations and provide backup radio operators when required. ASC teams are in essence an integrated unpaid member of the sponsoring agency.

ARES/ACS provides qualified communications personnel who establish ad-hoc radio communications links where and when they are needed. ARES/ACS may be defined as the emergency public service arm of Radio Amateurs of Canada (RAC), and the Amateur Radio Relay League (ARRL) in the United States.

Its purpose is to advance the public interest and the interests of Amateur Radio by providing a volunteer emergency telecommunications service to federal, provincial, municipal or other local government departments and agencies, designated non-government organizations (NGO) and critical public utilities during an emergency or disaster, including necessary training and incidental activities.

View full article on the RAC website.

Last updated on July 29th, 2023 at 12:29 pm