(PRESS RELEASE) – On Wednesday 27th 2019, members of the Cap Estate Neighborhood Watch group attended a training session on how to sustain an active Community Group and how to develop an effective Neighborhood Watch Group.
The training session, which was held at the Bay Gardens Marina Haven Hotel, was conducted by Mr Jim Joseph, President of the Beausejour Community Group, and Sergeant Alex Morgan of the Community Relations Branch of the Royal Saint Lucia Police Force (RSLPF).
The Cap Estate group felt that there should be greater synergies between the two communities and reached out to the Beausejour team for assistance in strengthening their group. The training session focused on empowering the group in identifying the core problems and root causes associated with establishing and maintain an effective community group and neighborhood watch within Cap Estate.
In a brainstorming session, the group was able to zoom in on some of the factors which contribute to a lack of participation by residents in a community group and to identify the strategies and systems needed to address these issues. Joseph taught the how to use the Problem Tree and Solution Tree Analysis approach, which is a methodology used to identify core problems, its root causes and its effects. These problems, causes and effects are then used to formulate goals, objectives and the impact of the interventions to be undertaking within the community.
The Beausejour Community President, in addressing the group, stated that many problems exist because persons to not ask the question ‘WHY’, and the problem/solution tree analysis approach forces persons to delve into the source of the problem by systematically noting the cause and effects of problem. He taught the group how to zoom down to each problem area until it was exhausted to the point of asking the question ‘who or what is responsible, and what can I do or what can we do to solve the problem’. The group was able to focus on the problems unique to Cap Estate and to will meet at subsequent meetings to strategize the way forward.
Sergeant Morgan’s presentation focused on defining what a Neighborhood Watch group was, the functions of a neighborhood watch group, the roles and areas of responsibility, safety procedures, crime detection, crime prevention and reporting and collaborative mechanism with police and other crime fighting partners.
Mr Jim Joseph, who was the recipient earlier this year of the 2019 Silver Medal of Honor (Lilet Awards) for Community Service along with the Beausejour Community Group who also received the Bronze Trophy (2019 Lilet Awards) for Longstanding Service to Community Development, shared the group’s experience and lessons learned over the almost 15 years of existence. He stated that community service requires selflessness, dedication, perseverance, fortitude and places a demand on one’s time and resources, but noted that if each person in the community plays their part, it makes the task easier for community leaders and can have a greater impact on the community at large.