Residents of Port Elizabeth enjoyed a day of good fun last weekend (Sunday 15 November) at a fundraising event organised in aid of the Lorraine Neighbourhood Watch. The day was supported by armed response company Fidelity ADT.
“We are always more than happy to support our partners in security and law enforcement, and that is why we sponsored a prize for the lucky draw competition that was part of the day’s festivities at the Dijon Shopping Centre,” says Ryan Britz, Port Elizabeth branch manager for Fidelity ADT.
The prize was won by a member of the LNW, Barbara Richards. She thanked Britz and his team for their ongoing support for the LNW.
It is important for ordinary residents to also get involved in their own safety and to support organisations such as the LNW, says Britz. He offered some tips on community safety efforts:
- Be vigilant about closing your gates. An open gate is an invitation to criminals, as is a car parked outside the property. Support the private security companies which patrol your suburb by reporting gates left open at their customers’ homes.
- Get to know your neighbours. By speaking to them, you will ascertain whether you are on the same page when it comes to preventing crime. If they have minimal security in place, offer to at least be each other’s eyes and ears and exchange contact numbers.
- Be part of a security WhatsApp group for your suburb. Stick to the rules of the group and make valuable contributions by reporting any suspicious vehicles or activity. If your neighbour isn’t on the group, ask if you can get them added. Use the information on the group to track crime trends in your suburb and in surrounding suburbs, and spread the word. Don’t spread unnecessary panic though and always ensure information is verified before telling others.
- Ultimately, be responsible for the protection of your own home and family. You can’t change the world overnight, but you can keep your property and loved ones safe. This involves arming your alarm whenever you leave the house, connecting electric fencing and outdoor beams to an armed response service provider, ensuring security doors are locked at all times and educating everyone in your household – including helpers – about security and who to phone in an emergency.