New eyes on the streets

2015-08-11 06:00
A newly established neighbourhood watch in Puns Estate and surrounds are determined to make a difference in their community where crime is concerned.

A newly established neighbourhood watch in Puns Estate and surrounds are determined to make a difference in their community where crime is concerned.

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Anewly established neighbourhood watch has its “eye” on crime and the members are determined to make a difference in their community.

Phew neighbourhood watch – a combination of Puns Estate, Heathfield, Elfindale and Winsor Park – is aimed at deterring criminals from committing crime in these areas.

Enver Maneveld, chairperson of the watch, says the watch was established about 10 months ago in an effort to decrease crime in the area.

“There had been an increase in crime and myself and another resident decided to take action, to start patrolling our neighbourhood and deter criminal activity,” he says.

Maneveld says more residents slowly joined as the word spread about what they were trying to achieve.

The neighbourhood watch now has about 200 members and 40 active patrollers.

“We are always urging people to join the neighbourhood watch or to start their own street committee. Being a neighbourhood watch member does not mean that you have to patrol – there are many other roles to play,” he says.

Maneveld says even when walking to the shop someone can be on patrol, while walking their dog as well as sitting at home on the stoep. These are all part of being an active member.

“We understand that there are many elderly people who cannot physically do what we do and we do not expect them to go out on patrol in the middle of the night or early hours of the morning. We need to ensure that we look out for them,” he says.

The neighbourhood watch members patrol every day during specific times they have worked out according to trend of crimes committed.

“We patrol between four to six hours per shift and drive around in our cars,” he says.

People’s Post joined the neighbourhood watch on a patrol last week and could see exactly what they did when out on the streets.

While driving around the watch members looked out for open gates, checked cars parked outside driveways and on the streets and checked suspicious people walking around.

The watch also relies on police assistance during patrols if they come across suspicious individuals.

“As patrollers and a neighbourhood watch we are the eyes and ears of the police. And without their support we cannot do this on our own. In cases where we come across suspicious people while out on patrol we call for police support,” he says.

Maneveld urges residents to join the watch if they want to make a difference in their community

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