ONLY ON 3: Neighborhoods use Facebook to keep watch

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Neighborhood Watch is nothing new, but technology is changing the way communities get together. In the past year, several Wilmington neighborhood pages have popped up on Facebook, and the trend continues to grow.

You can find your friends and businesses on Facebook. Now you can find your neighbors.

Some of the newest pages on the social media site are neighborhood pages. Some pages list neighborhood events, but there are some like “Ogden Community Watch,” which is your typical neighborhood watch, but online.

“The main thing that prompted me, there was some issues in the area with a little boy. Luckily he’s OK,” said Ally Harper.

Harper started the “Ogden Community Watch” page last month, after a neighborhood kid had a close call with an alleged abductor. Now the mom is trying to create a safer community.

“I’ve been here for 11 years, and I’ve noticed some changes here with some break-ins and close calls with children,” Harper said. “Facebook is just a great way to get the message out there.”

Neighbors like Melissa Siano say the Facebook page will bring their neighborhood closer.

“I’m hoping that people can join together and possibly start knowing who their neighbors are again,” Siano said. “It seems to me that people don’t even know who lives next door to them anymore.”

Even though the “Ogden Watch” Facebook page only has a few members right now, Harper and Siano hope their whole neighborhood will get involved and start posting on the page.

Recently David Hutson wrote about a woman who knocked on his door in the middle of the night asking for a ride. Harper and Siano say this is a perfect example on how neighbors can let each other know what’s going on.

“We can post if we see suspicious activity or if we know about a break-in, anything in the surrounding neighborhoods, and we can really try and help each other out and keeping each other informed,” Siano said.

Harper and Siano say they are in the process of also getting a traditional neighborhood watch together. They plan to post updates from that neighborhood watch group on Facebook as well.

Categories: New Hanover

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