The Basics of Neighbourhood Watch
How does Neighbourhood Watch work ?
Each NHW group is defined as a “Scheme” and can be formed by a small number of houses, a whole street or even an entire housing estate.
Each Scheme is organised by a Street (Scheme) Coordinator and an Area Coordinator provides support and assistance to all NHW Schemes in their designated district.
All NHW Schemes are voluntary community initiatives, which are supported by the Police, but are not run by them.
The effectiveness of each Scheme depends on the efforts and enthusiasm of its members and its activities reflect what the members are happy to do.
All Schemes require their members to remain alert to any criminal or suspicious activity going on in their neighbourhood and reporting it, without delay, to the Police. Additionally, NHW Schemes encourage households to take common sense crime prevention measures to secure their property.
Some Schemes hold regular meetings to keep their members up to date with issues that directly affect them, whilst other Schemes distribute newsletters or organise special events to raise security awareness.
As a guideline, the basic roles and responsibilities for members of a Scheme are shown here.
What Makes a Scheme a Success ?
Enthusiasm and commitment from every member is extremely important. The more interest and activity members put into their Scheme, the more effective and successful it will be.
A successful NHW Scheme develops a safer community to live. It gives residents a personal influence on crime reduction and an improvement in the quality of life in their neighbourhood by making people feel safer in their own homes.
As a result, an overall fear of crime can be reduced and a corresponding increase in community well-being can be achieved.