They pledged to help make their communities a safer place and Picton mischief-makers are next in their sights.
Blenheim Community Patrol volunteers have been so successful in their bid to help police they have been approached to set up a regular beat in Picton.
The team hope to recruit more people to help catch potential troublemakers and “steer them” towards a more positive path.
Patrol coordinator and volunteer Moira Conroy says early intervention is key.
“There are a few young ones over there who think they can get up to mischief.
“We’d like to deter them young so they don’t end up in prison,” she says.
Since it began in 2017, the patrol has seen volunteer numbers rise and fall but are currently steady at seven with one recent addition to the team.
Proving to the public they were there to help and not “tell tales to the police” was the first step in building trust, says Moira.
“When we first started there were some negative comments from some of the young ones that we were there to go running to the police.
“Word’s getting through that we’re there to help and are looking out for people and their welfare,” she says.
For Moira, one night in particular stays in her mind when the patrol were on hand to help an assault victim.
Pale and starting to go into shock, the young woman had blood dripping down her face.
Community Road Patrol were out on the streets of Blenheim and rushed to help.
“The police just can’t be everywhere and we can help fill gaps,” Moira says.
“We’ll keep an eye out for people struggling to get home, those who have had too much alcohol and just can’t manage it alone.”
But it’s not just in town that the crew have proven their mettle.
From helping find a drunken wedding guest lost in a vineyard off of Rapaura Rd to calling ambulances, the team have all gone through a rigorous training process.
Moira says that volunteering is a commitment but people are also needed to help with administration and fundraising.
“It’d be nice if a couple of people could commit to some fundraising for us. They’re are heaps of avenues for fundraisers but we just haven’t got the time”.
To find out more about Blenheim Community Patrol email [email protected] or visit facebook.com/blenheimcommunitypatrol/