On­line to cut crime

Kapi-Mana News - - OPINION / NEWS - By AN­DREA O’NEIL

Crime preven­tion ad­vice is mov­ing from peo­ple’s let­ter­boxes to their in­boxes, as a po­lice-af­fil­i­ated char­ity moves into the brave new world of crowd­fund­ing and so­cial me­dia.

For two decades Crime Preven­tion Community has dis­trib­uted free jour­nals to let­ter­boxes around the coun­try, ad­vis­ing peo­ple on crime mat­ters like the symp­toms of drug abuse and fam­ily vi­o­lence coun­sel.

Tak­ing the con­cept into the 21st cen­tury has been the task of Ti­tahi Bay’s Jeremy An­der­sen, the char­ity’s cam­paign di­rec­tor for 12 years.

‘‘The jour­nals are very static. We want to cre­ate a community,’’ Mr An­der­sen says.

A key part of the web­site will be mem­bers shar­ing their own crime preven­tion tips.

‘‘It’s not just po­lice telling peo­ple or us telling peo­ple, it’s the community giv­ing each other ad­vice,’’ Mr An­der­sen says. ‘‘It’s like a glo­ri­fied neigh­bour­hood watch, on a na­tional level.’’

Crime Preven­tion Community was set up in the late 1990s by a group of se­nior po­lice called the Po­lice Man­agers’ Guild Trust.

Fund­ing crime preven­tion groups has been a huge part of its work in that time – in 10 years $3 mil­lion has been handed out to groups like Women’s Refuge and school drug preven­tion group DARE.

Mov­ing to the web has al­lowed Mr An­der­sen to ex­per­i­ment with mi­cro­fund­ing, where peo­ple vote on­line to award busi­ness fund­ing to an or­gan­i­sa­tion – the more votes, the big­ger amount.

Mi­cro­fund­ing is a win-win sit­u­a­tion, where char­i­ties get funds and busi­nesses get logo recog­ni­tion and good pub­lic re­la­tions, he says.

While Crime Preven­tion Community’s medium might have trans­formed, its mes­sage has re­mained the same, Mr An­der­sen says.

‘‘The whole pur­pose of our in­for­ma­tion is to arm peo­ple with knowl­edge and tools to be safe.’’

Visit Crime Preven­tion Community at thecpc. org.nz or on Face­book for ‘‘Crime Preven­tion Community’’.

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