Brock Watch worth a look

It's a new twist on an old problem.

People in a residential area are concerned about crime so they start up a neighbourhood watch group where like-minded individuals can work together to keep tabs on trends, alert each other and brainstorm solutions.

In Brocklehurst, all it took to spur people into action was a few reports of a suspicious person going door to door with a questionable story and asking for money.

Brock Watch was hatched by Elly Grabner as a result, and members started doing patrols a couple of weeks ago. There is no set schedule at this point or route, they just meet and start walking together, noting any problems.

The new twist on this old idea is that people are signing up via Facebook to indicate their interest, some 400 since the online page started two weeks ago.

Even if people are not able to get out and walk the streets with the others, the Brock Neighbourhood Watch Facebook page is a great resource in itself for connecting neighbours with each other.

One post on the page warned people to watch for a car with tinted windows frequently speeding through the neighbourhood, prompting others to write and suggest taking down the vehicle's plate to report it to police.

Another member posted information on the merits and costs of newly purchased window alarms, someone noted four blonde girls were spotted riding around on bikes and stealing items from properties, there was information about
future Brock Watch patrols and how past ones went, even a discussion about flying ants.

It's all about Brock, neighbours connecting
with neighbours and actively fending off criminal activity by being more alert together.

It may be argued social media alienates people from each other, limiting communication to an artificial online existence, but in this case, it's bringing people physically together and as a community.

It's an initiative that already has the ear of the RCMP, who organizers will meet with this week, and will no doubt catch the attention of other neighbourhoods.

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