Our Neighborhood Watch
In 2012 our Community was enjoying a rather safe and peaceful harbor, ~~ but then it started ~~ a rash of break-ins (both homes and cars). We had seven break-ins on Beechnut Lane alone, as well as, a string of break-ins in the Hickory Downs, 4100 and Farrington Communities. We were SHAKEN! It was a tough period of time for all of us. There had been a previous attempt to get Community involvement, but to no avail. THIS HAD TO STOP!
I called a Five Oaks Community meeting, and invited the Durham Police Department to speak to us. Sixty concerned residents came to that first meeting – an incredible turn out. Because of that turn out and a huge interest in our safety, we were on our way to forming the Five Oaks Neighborhood Watch program. The Police shared with us many safety tips, and informed us about issues that put our Communities at risk, i.e. bad lighting, overgrown bushes, and much more. They worked with us to bring Five Oaks to a knowledge of safety. New concepts were locked doors, porch lights on (criminals hate light!), security systems, window safety alarms, safety devices, and much more!
Block Captains signed up at that meeting to watch sections of homes within the four Five Oaks Communities. Block Captains reported several incidences that resulted in apprehending criminals – one actually carrying a Safe down one of our streets. A resident had installed a camera, and through ignorance, the intruder looked straight into it. It was shown on WRAL News – very effective to catch this culprit. Safety has increased significantly. since that first meeting in 2012. Although we can still improve in areas, such as leaving car doors unlocked with valuables in sight, we’ve come a long way with locking doors, keeping Pin Oaks garages closed, trimming bushes, porch lights on, and internal and outdoor camera monitors.
I have been involved in PAC3 (Partners Against Crime for District 3 (our Police District with offices off MLK by Harris Teeter). Check out the DPD website at https://durhamnc.gov/205/Distr
And to further promote our neighborhood’s safety: National Night Out (a national event), has been a huge success here in Five Oaks, drawing over 100 residents to learn more about our safety, as well as an opportunity to meet our super great District 3 Police. It’s also a great opportunity to socialize and meet other neighbors, and all for a good cause. This event is usually held the first Tuesday in August, and this year it’s scheduled for August 7, 2018. We expect to draw huge crowds once again. There are many give aways (restaurant certificates, gift cards, Five Oaks Neighborhood Watch branded materials, such as pens and jar openers. In previous years, we’ve had food trucks, sheet cakes, and as mentioned above, lots of goodies, and should be repeated this year. This is an event you’ll want to attend or maybe even help organize. We encourage all the Five Oaks Communities to join in this once a year event. Community involvement is the best way to keep our Community safe! We need your support to make this event, as well as our Neighborhood Watch program, a success. We are also calling upon our Block Captains to once again get involved….we need you
Neighborhood Watch Calendar:
June 4th: First kick off meeting for National Night Out;
July 23th: Second kick off meeting for National Night Out;
August 7th: National Night Out event;
October 6th: CPR Training Night;
December 10th: Neighborhood Watch Appreciation Night.
Tel# 919-768-3696. (posted by Rita Vanags, Five Oaks Neighborhood Watch Coordinator) 5/2/2018
Since Rita posted the above, we have received some exciting news: She has been selected by the City of Durham, to be awarded Durham’s *Neighbor Spotlight*. The purpose of this Durham program is to recognize residents who have gone above and beyond (1) the normal responsibilities to improve our Five Oaks Community; (2) increases involvement of other Five Oaks neighbors; (3) work to improve the safety and security of our Community; and (4) improve the quality of life within our Community. Rita will be presented with the Neighbor Spotlight Certificate by the Mayor of Durham during a City Council meeting. She will receive a sign that will display her Neighbor Spotlight selection; and she will be highlighted on the Durham Neighbor Spotlight website. Congratulations Rita for a job well done ~ the Five Oaks Community is appreciative of all you do, and we are so very proud of you! (posted by Ellen 9/1/2018)
She done did it ~ how wonderful! Our Community is so proud of Rita, her Team, and our Neighborhood Watch program. Here is a photo of Rita with the Mayor accepting her Award (posted by Ellen 9/18/2018):