November 05, 2015 - 2:28 PM
KAMLOOPS - It wasn’t a crime spree and there was no event to kick-start it, but when Ben Sears found out he could start a block watch in the lower Sahali neighbourhood he figured why not?
“Crime was not the inspiration; it’s not like our neighbourhood is plagued by crime,” Sahali Community Association founder Sears says. “It’s for prevention and community building."
Sears says the block watch for the neighbourhood, which includes 3,500 residences extending from the highway to McGill Road and down to Royal Inland Hospital, will be divided up block-by-block, hopefully with captains for different sections. There are similar block watches set up in Westsyde and Brock.
It won’t be policing but it will open up lines of communication, he says.
“Not many people know their direct neighbours. All it takes is a little bit of coordination just have to have shared emails and (phone) numbers,” Sears adds.
Meeting face-to-face and exchanging information is how Sears says locals could get a better sense of what’s going on throughout the block. It's about people keeping an eye out for suspicious activity and calling their neighbours if they notice anything out of the ordinary.
Sears says the association is hoping to hear from other people in the area who are interested in taking part. The group will liaise with the city’s community policing office and Sears hopes the city will provide block watch signage to deter those with sinister motives.
The crime rate ebbs and flows in the lower Sahali area, Sears says. The neighbourhood has dealt with car thefts, break and enters, and transient activity because of nearby motels and shopping areas.
While the association is focused on creating a block watch, there are other activities for members. He says the group hosts occasional barbecues.
To learn more about the association and the proposed block watch, visit their Facebook page called The Sahali Community Association.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2015