Paul Corbett hopes that community get-togethers like the beach party he held on Aug. 2 can help bring together the community, and that the community change its approach to crime in Penticton. (Brennan Phillips — Western News)

Video: Group targets bringing together Penticton to prevent crime

Get-togethers and a new app, Lightcatch, are some tools to use

By Brennan Phillips

Western News Staff

Penticton resident Paul Corbett thinks people are losing their connections to neighbours in the era of social media — he wants to see that change.

The best way to make this change, he said, is to find out who lives in your neighbourhood and meet with them in person.

That’s why Corbett held the first of two beach parties on Aug. 2 which saw about a dozen people stop by. The aim was to help foster greater community spirit and to provide a forum for new ideas.

“We have a crime problem in our community and I’d like to address it,” Corbett said. “One way we might encompass it is to embrace our traditional values, where you saw neighbourhoods where everyone knew everyone. I think we need to go back and bring some of the old values back. Maybe we’ve lost touch with that because what we’re doing now, isn’t working. So maybe it’s time to try something old again.”

READ MORE: Modern-day block watch app, Lightcatch, catching on in Penticton

For Corbett, any beach party — or block party, or a backyard barbecue — helps to create an atmosphere where people can mingle and get to know one another, to rekindle the connections that neighbourhoods once shared.

The second party is scheduled for Friday, Aug. 9 on Skaha Beach. The party is open to everyone in Penticton. The aim is to help get the community to meet each other face to face in a friendly environment.

The idea for the beach parties spun out of conversations on Facebook, including some in the Lightcatch group, he said.

Lightcatch is another modern take on an old concept, this time of the neighbourhood watch programs. The app is designed to use social media to facilitate better communication and reporting of crimes, and to help keep a track of criminals in the community. Users are able to take photos of suspected criminals with stolen goods or drug paraphernalia and the like, and after a moderator vets the posting, share it with other users of the app. Some members of the community see the app as a way of bridging the old attitudes with modern technologies.

“There is such a sense of inability to address the thefts of bikes, thefts of cars, and the attitude that it’s okay to do that sort of the thing,” said Gary Haupt, a proponent of Lightcatch in Penticton.

READ MORE: Penticton RCMP has the busiest detachment in B.C.

“We know the police are up to their bum in alligators, and there’s only so much they can do. (Lightcatch) allows the community to be involved. They can be the eyes because we all see stuff, every day. You can sit behind your computer — we have that terminology, keyboard warrior — you can have that, but you can be involved in what’s going on in your street, in your community.”

To report a typo, email: editor@pentictonwesternnews.com.


@PentictonNews
newstips@pentictonwesternnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Okanagan Similkameen could have a sister city in the south of France

Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen considering agreement with wine region in southern France

Summerland businesses participate in Sip N’ Shop

Downtown event on Dec. 14 will feature local beverages

Noxious odour detected at Summerland Health Centre

Staff felt nauseous following incident on morning of Dec. 5

EDITORIAL: Reflecting on a tragedy, 30 years later

While the Montreal Massacre made headlines because of its scale, gender-based violence is not new

Sicamous Eagles defeat Summerland Steam in overtime decision

Junior B hockey teams faced off in Summerland on Dec. 5

VIDEO: Boys help rescue Cariboo bear cub

The cub, weighing just 24lbs, has been taken to wildlife sanctuary in Northwest B.C. for the winter

Doors open to Vernon’s first refill store

Vernon’s Refill Store may be answer to plastics problem

Okanagan RCMP not toying around when it comes to impaired drivers

Saturday, Dec. 7 is National Impaired Driving Enforcement Day

‘Things haven’t changed enough:’ Ecole Polytechnique anniversary prompts reflection

Fourteen women were fatally shot by a gunman at the Montreal school on Dec. 6, 1989

Bear raids freezer, gorges on Island family’s Christmas baking

Hungry bruin virtually ignored meat and fish, focused, instead, on the sweets

Crown delves into Sagmoen’s history with North Okanagan sex workers

Decision on validity of police search warrant will be made on Monday, Dec. 9

Kelowna man attempts to steal bait bike from RCMP parking lot

38-year-old Brian Richard Harbison is facing several charges

B.C. pharmaceutical company’s stocks double in value after successful lupus drug trial

More than 40 per cent of patients using voclosporin saw improvements in kidney function

UBCO daycare services slated for major improvements

More families will have access to high-quality child care services at UBCO

Most Read