Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Community Building - AV Women's Forum

The Amberley Village Women's Forum met again last evening at Jayme Klosterman's house and we were joined by Officer Mike Koenig and Chief Rich Wallace for an informative presentation about keeping ourselves safe at home and forming neighborhood block watch groups. We were given several tips for being safe at home, which really are so obvious, but I'm embarrassed to say that I am a huge offender of many of them.
Officer Koenig tells us to be observant.

Chief Wallace introduces the discussion of safety
First of all, if you have an alarm system don't forget to use it. It's so easy to get into the habit of not turning it on  because "we'll only be gone for a short while" or fear that we will set it off by accident and be embarrassed when the police show up at our door. The perpetrators of burglaries in and around Amberley Village are primarily looking for easy targets to feed a heroin habit. They don't want to be confronted by pesky burglar alarms. So, if you have an alarm, turn it on. We learned that many break ins occur by the burglar breaking a rear window to enter the house and then exiting through a door. So, even if you don't have a glass break sensor, the alarm will be triggered when the burglars exit your home. IF you set it!

Dogs and other animals are a great deterrent, as are cars in the driveway and leaving the radio or TV turned on. Whatever you do, don't make it easy for the would-be burglar. Lock your car doors, lock your house doors, and close your garage door. The best deterrent, however, is keeping an eye out for anything unusual in your neighborhood. This is where the Watch Groups come in.
Crime map of Amberley Village
While the police can come by your house and do an inspection a few times a day while you are on vacation, nothing beats the watchful eyes of your own neighbors. I am planning on implementing a group in my own neighborhood, and what a great way to get to know each other. If my neighbors know that I'm going on vacation, then they can be alert to strange cars parked in my driveway -- or better yet -- if someone pulls up with a van and starts loading it up with my possessions, they will know to call the police rather than assume that it is AmVets or the Salvation Army.
I really should take that camera class... 

...so I know how to turn off the "auto" settings.

We will be continuing this discussion on home and personal safety and invite all Amberley women to join us once a month at the Amberley Women's Forum. There is always ample time to socialize and as an outgrowth of the meeting, a women's tennis league is now forming. If you are interested in joining our mailing list (or playing tennis), please email avwomensforum@gmail.com.  We look forward to meeting you at our next meeting.


  1. Other things that I learned: If you leave your kid (teen) home alone and someone comes to the door have them call out, "Dad, someone's at the door." and then the kid should call the police. That will let the burglar know that someone is at home (these burglars like unmanned houses) without putting your child at risk.
    The police are having a meet and eat lunch on March 1st so you can get to know your police department personnel.
    Amberley Green Garden is planning to build garden plots with deer fencing behind the clubhouse on Amberley Green if you are interested in raising veggies.
    Tree City Luncheon is April 21.
    Thanks Natalie for your summary!
    Cindy Barr on Longmeadow

    1. Thanks Cindy! Great to meet another former Finneytowner last night!


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