Some say the neighbourhood’s not very exciting
A commitment to patrolling may seem alien to some, but husband- and- wife Santosh and Ekta find their motivation in giving back to the community. “It’s a good way for us to contribute to our neighbourhood. It’s small, but it’s how we can give back by making sure our neighbourhood is safe. We also get to interact with the neighbours and make new friends.”
For Ekta, her communal spirit comes from a similar place of love. “I love cooking for my family, taking care of them. I don’t think that’s very different from patrolling, I’m just taking care of a bigger family.”
The gift of giving back
The couple first came to know about COP through a colleague who posted about it on WhatsApp. They looked it up, thought it would be fun as an outdoor activity — and signed themselves up.
And yet, there’s more to patrolling than stopping on the heels of your trainers to chitchat. To qualify to patrol, Santosh and Ekta had to undergo training to become equipped with basic crime prevention, SGSecure and Community Emergency Preparedness skills. “They are important skills to have and better prepare us to respond appropriately in the face of various scenarios, such as alerting the Police when we observe suspicious activities or persons.”
Most evenings the COP members patrol their neighbourhood while keeping an eye out for their neighbours and their surroundings, sharing crime prevention advisories, helping some with directions, and some who just need a little push on their bicycles. They also discover new places within their neighbourhood; places they’ve never been to, even after having lived there for years.
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