Association of Dorset Watches
The PCC supports the Association of Dorset Watches (ADW) via the Safer Dorset Fund because of their ongoing success in helping to prevent crime, reduce anti-social behaviour and increase community safety across the county.
The association provides a pan Dorset umbrella organisation, which is able to offer advice and assistance to many individual groups.
The ADW is made up of a large number of watch schemes including Neighbourhood and Home Watch, Business, Farm, Horse, Pub, Speed and Shop Watch. Together, the Watch schemes form a network, which makes it very easy for police to distribute messages and make appeals through. Should an incident happen, police are able to put out a message via the Dorset Alert system, which goes out to all members of the watch schemes. This system is not only used for gathering information from the public, such as with missing persons and witness appeals, but is also utilised when members of the community report suspicious behaviour in their area, to distribute important information from Dorset Police, etc. An example of this is where police have a sighting of a suspicious vehicle circling around an area, a message will go out via Dorset Alert to ensure residents in that area are aware of the suspicious activity and help to prevent them falling victim to any potential crime.
The money from the Safer Dorset Fund goes towards the core costs of running the numerous watch schemes. This includes ‘Stop That Thief’ demonstration kits, which go out via the ADW and include alarm kits that are loaned out to farms for a number of weeks at a time to improve the security of their homes and businesses.