That’s the question asked by Chris Tremain in his Guest Buzzmaker column for the coming week.
In fact, as you’ll see in Chris’ column, a lot of brainstorming has been going on to develop creative ideas for reducing violence in our community. Here’s a very brief preview of just three …
1. “Kaumatua Rocket Reading”… an initiative aimed at turning Flaxmere kids into some of the Bay’s best readers. This single initiative involves a book drive to establish a library on the Marae, a partnership with local schools, volunteer “Kaumatua” and one-on-one reading with children after school.
2. Working with Police on a reinvigorated “Flaxmere Style” Neighbourhood Watch program where the community gets to know each other in small clusters and begins to look after each other on a more personal level.
3. “Flaxmere Sunday School” (FSS) is a Flaxmere Community “Work Order”, worked at the Community Marae, which can be issued to 12-16 year-olds by both Flaxmere Community Police and Flaxmere Principals. The order would be similar to a speeding ticket with no conviction and no need to go to court. They would be issued under the auspices of a Flaxmere Community Board.
The FSS is an order to serve a day’s community work or to attend a day’s community programme to be held at the Marae either on a Sunday or during school holidays. It is designed to give 12 to 16 year olds a short, sharp, shock about their behaviour, without imposing a criminal record, but making sure their unacceptable actions – such as vandalism, shoplifting, fighting, tagging, truancy – have consequences.
These and other ideas will be discussed at a public meeting on Wednesday, August 20th, 7pm, at the Flaxmere Community Marae. There, Chris, Henare, Craig Foss, Wayne Bradshaw and others who have been working to developing follow-up plans hope to get heaps of public comment and suggestions … and some buy-in from the community.
Attend if you can.
You can also share your views and ideas by completing this online survey that BayBuzz has prepared with the planning team. We ask about some specific proposals, and provide plenty of opportunity for you to provide your own thoughts.
But however you choose, we look forward to hearing from you. Henare and his team are eager to getting some concrete programs off the ground.