Lo­cals em­brace Neigh­bourly site

The Invercargill Eye - - FRONT PAGE - STAFF RE­PORTER

South­land and Otago res­i­dents have been join­ing the Neigh­bourly phe­nom­e­non in their thou­sands.

At last count, more than 6300 peo­ple in South­land and 13,600 across Otago had signed up to the free com­mu­nity web­site that helps neigh­bours share in­for­ma­tion and stay con­nected.

By last week, more than 950 peo­ple in Cen­tral In­ver­cargill had joined up. Glen­garry and East In­ver­cargill was not far be­hind, with 919. Other Neigh­bourly group­ings in The Eye’s read­er­ship area in­cluded Strath­ern and South In­ver­cargill (617 mem­bers), Windsor (417), Otatara and West (317), Glad­stone (284), Waikiwi (383), Gras­mere (250), and Win­ton (242).

Na­tion­ally, Neigh­bourly is clos­ing in on half a mil­lion mem­bers, who are us­ing the site to in­ter­act on top­ics rang­ing from lo­cal events and emer­gen­cies, af­ter-school ac­tiv­i­ties, crime and safety, coun­cil is­sues, lo­cal ser­vices -- even lost pets.

Oth­ers are us­ing the site to keep their neigh­bours up­dated on road clo­sures dur­ing floods or snow, how to get in­volved with lo­cal char­i­ties or dis­cuss the im­pact of coun­cil plans on their com­mu­nity.

Neigh­bourly is also the on­line home of dig­i­tal edi­tions of The Eye, and pro­vides an easy method for com­mu­nity groups in our neigh­bour­hoods to reg­is­ter events for the news­pa­per’s ‘ What’s on’ list­ings (go to nbly.nz/eye).

News sto­ries writ­ten by re­porters on The Eye are posted to Neigh­bourly for mem­bers to see, of­ten be­fore they ap­pear in the pa­per. Neigh­bourly is 70 per cent owned by Fair­fax Me­dia, the owner of The Eye and Stuff.

Co-founder Casey Eden said mem­ber­ship had ex­ceeded ex­pec­ta­tions.

‘‘We wanted to do some­thing to en­able neigh­bours and com­mu­ni­ties to share in­for­ma­tion and en­gage in con­ver­sa­tion. We’re blown away by how many peo­ple are us­ing it.’’

Neigh­bourly’s com­mu­nity di­rec­tory lets mem­bers search for neigh­bours who live nearby and com­mu­ni­cate with them. Lo­cal or­gan­i­sa­tions like Neigh­bour­hood Sup­port, schools and res­i­dents’ as­so­ci­a­tions are us­ing the site to con­nect with their com­mu­ni­ties, and mem­bers are us­ing it to set up book clubs, run­ning groups, neigh­bour­hood gar­dens, pro­duce swaps or ad­ver­tise kinder­garten fundrais­ers.

To find out more about Neigh­bourly, or to sign up for free, go to neigh­bourly.co.nz

SUP­PLIED

Casey Eden, co-founder of Neigh­bourly.

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