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New programme...Community Networking Trust Neigh bourhood Support co- ordinator Kelly Young and Neighbourhood Sup port police liaison con stable Julie Russell of Wyndham are looking forward to the launch of the Neighbourhood Sup port programme that will encourage neighbours to get to know each other. PHOTO: SANDY EGGLESTON

Neighbours looking out for neighbours is the aim of a new programme being launched in Gore next month.

The Neighbourhood Support programme is a joint venture between Eastern Southland Police and the Community Networking Trust (CNT).

Senior Sergeant Cynthia Fairley, of Gore, said she realised there was a need for neighbours to be in contact with each other after last year’s flood and the Covid-19 lockdowns.

“It was quite clear the communities connected for those [events] but we want a foundation for ongoing connectivity of neighbourhoods and streets and rural roads.

“It’s about looking out for each other.”

She made inquiries and found out more about the Neighbourhood Support programme.

It was similar to the Neighbourhood Watch project which started in the 1970s and was later renamed Neighbourhood Support in 2000.

In the past few years the programme has been rebranded and the emphasis changed.

“It’s about connecting neighbours and keeping each other safe, especially during hard times.”

Coming up to the summer holiday break it was useful for neighbours to be aware when others in the street were away, she said.

In the past neighbours had known each other and helped each other, she said.

CNT neighbourhood support co-ordinator Kelly Young said she was very impressed with the programme which had similar aims to the trust.

“I think it’s fantastic.

“Creating safe, resilient and connected communities is almost identical to the CNT’s mission.

“We’re here for the same purpose.”

Signing up to the programme was easy and did not require any commitment to do anything unless people wanted to.

“It’s really just about getting to know your neighbours, keeping an eye out for anything you might think might be a little bit astray or amiss.”

It was a good way for neighbours to introduce themselves to people who moved into the street.

“It could be that icebreaker that helps remove the isolation of moving into a new area.”

People could either sign up on the website or fill in a form and give it to Mrs Young.

There were volunteer roles within the programme if people wanted to be involved more.

The launch would be a good opportunity for people to find out more about the programme, they said.

“At our launch we will have guest speakers, information, refreshments and goodie bags,” Mrs Young said.

“We look forward to seeing everyone there.”

The programme launch will be held at the Calvin Community Church at 6pm on December 9. To register for the Neighbourhood Support programme people can visit this website https:easternsouthland.getsready.net or download a mobile device app.