This week we have had another tragedy; the death of a community member from a falling tree. My thoughts go out to family and friends and those who were present. I know these sentiments are shared by many of you. Such events can have a big impact on us, especially for those directly involved. Victim Support provides a free support service for people affected by trauma and crime. This includes those people directly affected, members of their family and witnesses to an incident or first on scene. If you feel you need support following a traumatic incident or crime, call them on 0800 842 846.
We are indeed a town that cares, and this is demonstrated in many ways. Did you know we have a diligent band of volunteers who act as extra eyes and ears around town in the evenings? They patrol in a sign written ute and liaise with Police around crime prevention, assisting with such things as proactive patrolling, monitoring for suspicious vehicles, alerting shopkeepers to insecure premises and more. Each patroller goes through vetting and training before going out on patrol and I am appreciative of their dedication and community spirit. If you are interested in volunteering your time, contact [email protected] in the first instance.
At the Safer Cambridge website (www.safercambridge.co.nz) you will also find information about our Cambridge Neighbourhood Support. Getting to know your neighbours has many advantages. It provides social networks and added security, opening as it does lines of communication when anything suspicious happens. Being part of a registered Neighbourhood Support Group connects you in with a wider network, providing information on crime prevention and local issues when they arise. Eileen Hawkins is the NSG Community Engagement Officer here in Cambridge. You will find her in her office at the Community Pavilion at Victoria Square or on the email above. To register your interest in becoming part of a group, get in touch.
One other topic I wish to address is mental health. As you know, informing police on 111 at the time an event is happening is key. A mental health crisis occurs when a person’s thoughts, feelings and actions put themselves in danger of injuring themselves. Where someone you know is in mental health crisis, I encourage you to act promptly to reach out for professional support. You can phone the Crisis Assessment and Home Team 24 hours, 7 days on 0800 505050. They are there to provide support, assessment and advice. If the person is acting in a disordered way and their behaviour indicates immediate actual or threatened harm to themselves, you or others, I encourage you to call 111 straight away to ensure help arrives before things escalate.
Have a good week and stay safe.