Group volunteers give back to town
Giving something back to the changing. The volunteer capacity is community is at the heart of their desire shrinking as the local population gets to volunteer, say those at the helm of the younger and busier, while the older, Omokoroa Community Policing Group retired folkwith time up their sleeves (OCPG) charitable trust. diminish in number.
Christine, Bill, Pat and Tony are Group founder Glenn Whittaker says among 180 volunteers giving their time Western Bay of Plenty District Council and life skills to the group which covers has given constant support throughout four key areas— the police information the 11 years the group has been centre; Neighbourhood Support; operating.
Community Patrols and Graffiti Busters. “It all began with the community’s
Volunteers are always welcome to frustration at the escalation in antijoin. It’s all about neighbours looking social behaviour. Council and the after neighbours, being the eyes and ears community board saw reduction in for your community and making a community crime an important difference. contributor to council’s community
Former chairman Tony Hawkins has development and safety,” says Glenn. given a few years to the OCPG and says Through the community board, he just likes getting things done and council provided the start-up funding in seeing a happy, balanced community 2007, the first community patrol car and that runs smoothly. has continuedwith staff support and a
Tony has handed over the reins to Pat little annual funding. Harrison, a retired primary school Community Constable for Tauranga teacher who¯soughtandOsomevolunteerwork mokoroa, Paul Wrigley, believes to keep himself busy. the proactive voluntary work of the
Soon¯toOaftermoving mokoroa, Pat group is a key reason that crime was filling a vacancy in the Police reporting has remained stable and low Information Centre and was then the area. shoulder tapped for group chairman. “The group is a one-stop shop for ¯inO“Ithasbeenagreatwaytogettoknowpolice mokoroa and itmakes it the community— I amhappy to playmy easier forme to provide intelligence and part,” says Pat. resources when appropriate. The power
Christine has also served on the group of networking is well demonstrated by for a number of years and is the familiar how the group keeps all the significant face in the Police Information Centre. community groups under one umbrella. She enjoys helping out and networking “Anecdotally, in comparison to other with the other community groups. suburbs Imonitor, including the avenue
Bill— a relative newcomer to the and suburbs closer to the city, mokoroa peninsula— is treasurer/secretary of the is definitely a very safe place to live.” trust and says there is great satisfaction Anyone keen to join the Omokoroa from serving his community and helping Community Policing Group iswelcome to “sit on the crims”. to get in touchwith chairman Pat on ¯agreeOAll mokoroa’s face is email@example.com. O¯