Taking back the streets

2015-11-04 06:00
 Photo: darshan rangai A few of the members of the Ottawa Crime Forum at their meeting at the weekend.

Photo: darshan rangai A few of the members of the Ottawa Crime Forum at their meeting at the weekend.

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

OTTAWA residents, organisations and police have turned the crime surge in the area around by working together and taking control of their community.

In February and March the area was plagued with crimes such as armed robbers, assaults with weapons, theft of vehicles and hijacking.

Ottawa Crime Watch chairman Nerash Dayanand said that at the start of the year incidents of crime were occurring around five times a week.

“We kept hearing of incidents taking place in our community and we decided we had to take a stand and make our area safe for our children and families. We knew we had to become proactive and mobilise or nothing would change,” said Dayanand.

“A handful of us walked from door to door and called the community to a meeting and we got started.”

In time, the group grew to dozens of residents being involved in patrols.

Using social media such as Facebook and Whatsapp while partnering with the police and community organisations, crime has now plummeted in the community.

“We now only have three or less incidents a month. In June and July we had no crime incidents in the community,” said Dayanand.

Although the community is winning their battle against crime, they are adamant the fight is far from over.

Dayanand said they don’t want to start sitting back and allow crime to creep in again, hence they are ensuring the community stays aware of what is taking place in surrounding areas in terms of crime through social media.

“We have a strict policy that our Facebook page and Whatsapp groups are used for only crime related information, warning the community of suspicious behaviour and helping mobilise residents if needed,” said Dayanand.

The Ottawa Crime watch has also initiated free self defence classes in the community every week so residents - both young and old - can have some skills to defend themselves.

SAPS communications officer Mark Prakasim commended the community in their dedication in fighting crime and the positive influence they are having through their success in other areas of Verulam.

“We are working with organisations like the Ottawa Crime Watch to combat crime in our community and are working on similar structures throughout Verulam. It’s important that the community work with police and in the confines of the law to combat crime,” said Prakasim.

If you would like to join Ottawa Crime Watch or learn more, call Dayanand on 084 324 7335.

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
PARTNER CONTENT
INFOGRAPHIC: New thinking required for retirement

Everything we believe about retirement is fast becoming outdated.

PARTNER CONTENT
WATCH: How education can change a life

A university education gives students the chance to create a better future for themselves, their families and to opportunity achieve their dreams.

/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
Traffic
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.