As we come to end of Volunteer Week it also marks 35 years since our very first Neighbourhood Watch Week, which runs all this week 7th - 13th June.
Over the past couple months, there has been a silver lining to the cloud COVID-19 has cast over our daily lives, as we have seen more neighbours talk to and support each other than ever before.
These positive connections are not only important for our mental health but are also at the heart of building safer neighbourhoods in which communities can thrive.
In recent months as people have felt the benefits of a more connected community, we have seen a clear rise in people joining Neighbourhood Watch.
As we ease out of lockdown, the time is right to celebrate the new connections made. We are calling on people across England and Wales, whether they are a Neighbourhood Watch member or not, to say thank you to your neighbours for the many ways, big or small, in which support has been offered. Now that we are in touch, let’s stay connected.
In support of this week, Tony Husband, an award-winning British cartoonist, has kindly gifted four cartoons depicting neighbourliness in lockdown. These cartoons can be downloaded from our website and displayed as posters in your window or gifted as thank you cards to your neighbours.
Neighbours have been helping each other in such a wide variety of ways - from the essentials of shopping and sharing safety information, to providing street entertainment and clapping for keyworkers on a Thursday. To recognise and celebrate this we are today launching a cartoon drawing competition open to everyone across England and Wales to express what neighbours have meant to us all over the past couple months. These drawings can be entered into our competition digitally and then displayed in your window as a poster or gifted as a thank you card to your neighbour. Full details can be found on our website: ourwatchorg.uk/letsstayconnected.
It’s fantastic that so many neighbours are looking out for each other. It’s important after taking initial steps to reach out to each other, we find ways to stay connected. The events in Neighbourhood Watch Week provide an opportunity for us to express ourselves and say thank you to those who live closest to us.
Many of us are now more familiar with online tools, so why not host a Big Virtual Lunch this week? Have a look at edenprojectcommunities.com/thebiglunchhomepage for inspiration on fun ways to connect online, on the phone or safely on your doorstep.
Whatever you decide to do, let’s stay connected!
Happy Neighbourhood Watch Week!