5 Tips for a Good Neighborhood Watch Program

November 22, 2016

Having a good neighborhood watch program can make you and your neighbor’s homes safer and more secure. But not all neighborhood watches are effective neighborhood watches. To make sure you and your neighbors are safe here are a few ideas and tips.

1. Be Sure You Have a Varied Group

While you and your friends will be more than happy to participate in the neighborhood watch you will need a varied and dependable team. Before you begin your watch you will need to contact trusted neighbors to see if they are interested. This way everyone will have a stake in the watch and will want to work to make the neighborhood as safe as possible.

Having a varied group can also help your group create new plans and ideas. Different members will have different perspectives, which will be better for your watch in the long run.

2. Aim for at Least 40 Percent Participation

You will want to make sure that your group will have at least 40 percent participation of the neighborhood. This will ensure a varied group and will also ensure plenty of participants so no one will become overworked with the watch. Be sure to also have a set schedule for events and watches within the neighborhood. This will help hold everyone accountable and keep everything organized.

3. Identify a Neutral, Secure Meeting Place

Make sure your meeting place is as close to the center of the town. This way no one will have to travel much further than anyone else in the watch and it will be possible to meet during bad weather. You may also want to have everyone download an app on their smartphones so all can stay in communication. This way no one will lose track of events, schedules, or watches, and you can have alerts if anything should happen.

4. Have a Reason for Meeting

Every meeting should have a specific topic. Your first meeting can be about how everyone can make their homes more secure and your next meeting can be the actual beginning of scheduling watches and events. This way everyone will immediately feel more prepared and will have time to decide how they can help with the watch.

5. Keep a Code of Ethics

When you are creating your watch you will want everyone on the same page. Be sure to have a code of ethics to ensure everyone avoids violence whenever possible and that the group will do what they can to educate themselves about the law and the requirements they may have for the watch.