ACT Government updates

Know your Neighbour and connect with the Canberra community

July 07, 2020

Canberra’s Community Recovery has taken another step forward with the launch of the ACT Government’s Know your Neighbour initiative. The initiative will see Canberrans able to drop off a Know your Neighbour card, offering contact details and help with daily tasks or even just a chat.

Minister for Community Services and Facilities, Suzanne Orr MLA and Neighbourhood Watch ACT President Mr Laurie Blackall today launched the initiative and dropped off several Know your Neighbour cards across Casey to help to build and maintain connections in the community.

The Know your Neighbour cards are being distributed across Canberra in partnership between the ACT Government and Neighbourhood Watch ACT. The cards have been designed to help strengthen community networks, especially during times of crisis.

Minister for Community Service and Families, Suzanne Orr MLA said the COVID-19 pandemic is having significant impacts on people’s economic, social and mental wellbeing and it is affecting everyone in the community differently.

“While many people in the community are increasing social contact with the easing of restrictions, there are people who will continue to isolate to protect their health and there are also people who are struggling with day-to-day tasks, particularly during long periods of isolation,” said Minister Orr.

“This card has been designed to support our community through various stages of physical distancing provisions and gives you options to offer assistance to your neighbour including helping them to get essential supplies like groceries, walking their dog, or you can simply use the card as a first step in reaching out to your neighbour to see how they are going.

“We all have experienced the impacts of COVID-19 in different ways and what we want everyone in community to know is that we are here to support each other.”

Neighbourhood Watch ACT President, Mr Laurie Blackall said that Neighbourhood Watch ACT is excited to partner with the Community Services Directorate to help get the message out across the Canberra Community.

“Our aim is to enhance the safety and security of our communities through the promotion of closer neighbourhood ties, and by sharing ideas and disseminating information through community programs that encourage participation in crime prevention and the building of safe and confident communities,” Mr. Blackall said.

“As an organisation, we actively assist in the promotion of mutual cooperation and caring between neighbours, and the “Know Your Neighbour” cards are a worthwhile, practical contribution to promoting closer neighbourhood ties.”

The Know Your Neighbour cards will be distributed by Neighbourhood Watch volunteers across many Canberra suburbs and will also be available from libraries, community centres, government shopfronts and some supermarkets and cafés. 

The cards were also recently distributed through Canberra Weekly and will be included in Community Activity packs. 

The cards are also available for download from the Connect In Canberra website.