Women banish thugs
Mischief-makers know Avon Lines and Andrina Grove are a force to be reckoned with in their Mt Roskill neighbourhood.
The pair have received an Auckland City Council community safety award for their work setting up Neighbourhood Support groups.
Both live near Fearon Park where safety issues prompted Ms Lines to raise concerns with her Housing New Zealand tenancy manager three years ago.
“We were having drug problems, alcohol problems and people hanging out in the park being obnoxious. There are mums coming to the park now who weren’t back then because they were too scared,” says Ms Lines.
Community development adviser Charlotte Esser got involved and suggested forming a Neighbourhood Support group.
She organised meetings with resi- dents and community constable Graeme Bruges, which is where Ms Lines and Ms Grove met.
The women were so keen that after helping coordinate their Mt Roskill group they signed up as executive committee members of Neighbourhood Support Auckland.
Ms Esser says the women are a “magic team” who “inspire people to actually take control of the issues in the neighbourhood and not feel powerless”.
In the past eight months the pair have helped set up 43 groups and will follow up with residents to make sure the plan gets off the ground.
In their own neighbourhood they have a tight-knit network of people keeping an eye out, including around the perimeter of Fearon Park.
“We have eyes and ears in the park. We get information all the time,” Ms Line says.
“We don’t need to have hooligans and thugs in areas with families.”
S a fe t y firs t:
Avo n L i n e s, l e f t , a n d A n d r i n a G r ove, r ig h t , wo n a c o m mu - n i t y s a fe t y awa r d w i t h t h e s u p p o r t o f H o u s i n g N Z c o m mu n i t y d eve l o p m e n t manager Char lotte Esser, centre.