This weekend (29 – 30 March) is Neighbours Day Aotearoa (NDA) – one of many Neighbours Days being held worldwide during March to encourage residents to get to know who they live next door to as a way of building stronger communities.
Neighbours can act as your first line of defence against crime. A close-knit community can reduce instances of breaking and entering, theft and damage to both property and cars and vandalism in an area. Get to know your neighbour and ask them to keep an eye on your home while you are out or on holiday and offer to return the favour for them.
How neighbours can help:
– No-one knows an area better than the people that live there. Neighbours can keep an eye out for unfamiliar characters or vehicles that appear. Once you establish a trusting relationship, you’ll feel more comfortable mentioning suspicious activity.
– Give your neighbour a spare key for when you are away and emergencies – it’s safer than leaving one outside where it can be discovered. Also, never mark keys with your name and address in case they are lost and fall into the wrong hands. If you need to, mark them with your initials or date of birth.
– Don’t give your keys to tradespeople who might be working on your home while you are away. Give them to a neighbour and ask them to open and lock up when the job is complete.
– If your neighbour has two cars, ask them to park one in your driveway to make it look as though someone is home.
– Ask your neighbour to leave a light on in a different room occasionally to make it look as though the house is occupied – this can be an effective deterrent to would-be burglars.
– When you are away, get your neighbour to collect your mail so it isn’t obvious your home is empty.
For more information about NDA, click here.