Meeting to set up Neighborhood Watch ends with two possible anti-crime groups on North Ambergris Caye
The rising number of burglaries and thefts north of the bridge moved San Pedro police and government officials, residents, business owners and others to seek a way to jump-start the dormant North Ambergris Caye Neighborhood Watch crime prevention group.
As many as 30 concerned citizens met at the El Pescador resort and came away reviving, not one. but two crime-prevention organizations for the nearly 20 miles of island extending north of the Sir Barry Bowen Bridge.
Both Neighborhood Watch groups have apparently enjoyed active and successful pasts over the last decade or so, and for reasons not completely apparent last night, both went dormant. Importantly, both retained membership mailing lists and institutional memories of successes and failures in running volunteer crime prevention groups.
Representatives from both groups expressed enthusiasm about reviving their organizations, and reluctance about merging into a single north island Neighborhood Watch. Fortunately for the long and narrow island, they would not overlap responsibilities.
One group would maintain responsibility over the area from the bridge to Mata Grande grocery store. The second would keep watch over the island to the north of the store, possibly as far as the northernmost island resorts, around Mexico Rocks. Jan Van Noord, owner of Portofino Resort, spearheads what is called the Middle Ambergris Caye Neighborhood Watch. Rob Eykelbeysh of Marbucks coffeeshop and Daydreamin’ Bed & Breakfast was pressed into leadership of the other group last night.
Both groups — and any citizens interested in public safety — will meet on Saturday at 10 a.m. at Marbucks to figure out the next steps. (The original post inadvertently gave the wrong time for the meeting. Blogger’s error. My apologies.)
Click here to read the rest of the article and see more photos in the Bound for Belize Blog