South Peace News
Efforts by the Northern Sunrise Rural Crime Watch Association have paid off not only for crime prevention efforts and victims of crime but for the organization.
The organization was awarded a 2021 Alberta Community Justice Award during a virtual ceremony July 16 in the Community Mobilization category.
The award recognizes the outstanding contributions of individuals and organizations promoting community justice in the Alberta.
The Northern Sunrise Rural Crime Watch Association [NSRCWA] has grown in recent years due to the commitment of the chairperson and other board members. The chair and vice chair have dedicated countless hours to sending out alerts, sharing crime prevention information and promoting crime reduction and community wellness in the Peace River Region. By building trust with surrounding communities, the organization has grown from 40 members to over 800 in recent years.
“These members act as the eyes and ears of the RCMP within the community and work together to change the narrative of why people should report crime, as well as teach people how to report it,” reads a news release issued during the awards.
“The NSRCWA has delivered presentations about Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design, supported Lock it or Lose it campaigns and promoted the use of specialized screws to prevent license plate theft.”
They do more. The organization has been involved with Fraud Prevention Month by sharing information about how to prevent fraud. The organization has also helped increase reporting of suspicious activities and is currently building a community safety and wellness plan with local organizations.
The group recently started submitting community impact statements for repeat offenders to be read in court on behalf of communities affected by crime. Similar to victim impact statements, these statements are a voluntary way for residents and communities who have been traumatized by a crime to have a voice without adding further emotional stress of having to appear in court before the accused.
Aberta Minister of Justice and Solicitor General Kaycee Madu offered congratulations to all the winners.
“Despite the unique challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, this year’s award winners have continued to make extraordinary improvements in their communities,” he says.
“Each of this year’s award recipients have enhanced their community in one way or another,” he says.
“You have set an incredible example for your fellow Albertans. Your proactive efforts to enhance community safety and prevent crime are truly invaluable,” he concludes.