In February, over sixty concerned neighbors came together to explore the potential for Woodland Heights to revitalize a Neighborhood Watch Program with a personality specific to our community. In the remote past, there have been some efforts to have an effective Neighborhood Watch program, but in recent years, Woodland Heights has gone without the benefits that Neighborhood Watch can offer.
At the first meeting, the sense of the group was that the overarching goals of the Program would be to improve the quality of residents’ lives, to participate in preventing crime in our neighborhood, and to realize a greater sense of security, responsibility and personal control over our homes. It was agreed that none of this will be possible without developing a greater sense of community in Woodland Heights, and working on that goal will be a significant component of the Program’s plan.
Woodland Heights is recognized as being a vibrant, diverse, urban community, which is one of its greatest attractions. The Neighborhood Watch Program recognizes the need to foster and encourage this virtue by focusing on community-building, on looking out for the welfare of our neighbors, and on developing effective communication among our residents and with the police in appropriate situations. The emphasis of Woodland Heights’ program is not planned to involve patrols or interventions which many feel would be inconsistent with the welcoming quality that characterizes our community.
The Watch program has heard from Police Department representatives at several meetings, and received an update on crime statistics and trends in the area. There was a report concerning some recent arrests following a number of complaints and a theft from the Patrick Henry School. At the meeting, there were suggestion about the best way for residents to report suspicious activity, and how best to communicate that to their neighbors. It has been decided that the Program needs Block Captains for the purpose of initiating first-hand contact with as many residents as possible, and a list of goals for Block Captains has been drafted. About twenty of our neighbors have offered to be Block Captains, but Woodland Heights is a big area and more volunteers are needed!
At this time, the Woodland Heights Neighborhood Watch program has nearly 70 members who share a desire to make the community a better place. The Watch Program has plans to make available free advice to folks who are interested in acquiring or upgrading a security system, and the Program’s Block Captains will be introducing themselves. With the Woodland Height Neighborhood Watch coordinating the efforts of the residents of the community, everyone can have a safer and more secure home.
Those who are interested in joining the Woodland Heights Neighborhood Watch can email: firstname.lastname@example.org
From Riverside News, Spring 2018 Issue. Submitted by Malcom Parks.