After Neighbourhood Watch comes Firewatch

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Around 118,000 people participate in the Neighbourhood Watch programme, the institution introduced in 2011 has effectively contributed to preventing crime and improved a sense of security, the Justice Ministry said.

After the scheme’s success, the government wants the public to stay vigilant for forest fires during the extreme summer heat.

On Monday, the ministry will host an event in Kyperounta, a mountainous community in the Limassol district, on the Firewatch Programme.

It said this was an extension of the Neighbourhood Watch Programme for matters related to fire safety.

The government wants to boost an early warning system to tackle wildfires to strengthen the mechanism for preventing forest fires and fires in surrounding forests.

“Since the Neighbourhood Watch institution has decisively contributed to crime prevention, it was decided to expand and strengthen the programme in preventing and dealing with the serious problem of catastrophic fires that plague our country, mainly every summer,” said the ministry.

In the wider area of South Pitsilia, 844 Neighborhood Watch participants are registered out of approximately 4,500 inhabitants.

The goal is to increase the number of residents joining the programme.

“Hopefully, this would be achieved by organising such events, which will continue to cover all districts, municipalities and communities.”