The writer says the WhatsApp Crime Watch has proved invaluable to them.

Letter: Crime has escalated rapidly in our communities with few if any anti-crime prevention strategies in some areas.

Almost everyone we know has been affected in some way. It could be a robbery, hijacking or worse - murder and rape.

As a community we can no longer rely solely on the police and response services to assist us.

We need to be proactive and participate in community activities designed to prevent crime.

One such crime prevention initiative is the local WhatsApp Crime Watch group. 

Each area has a designated Crime Watch group that consists of members of the community who report and assist with crime-related issues.

The group also consists of members from the local SAPS, ward councillors, activists and reaction units.

The WhatsApp Crime Watch has proved invaluable to me. 

When I experienced an attempted hijacking I was able to circulate on the group a description of the suspects’ vehicle.

Members of the community received this information faster than the SAPS as it was sent directly to their mobile devices and they were able to provide real-time feedback that led to an efficient arrest.

Had I not been on the WhatsApp Crime Watch the suspects would have inevitably found another victim, who might not have been as lucky as I was to escape with my life.

Don’t let your family, friends or neighbours be just another crime statistic. 

I urge members of the community to join their local WhatsApp Crime Watch because you never know when you might need a helping hand.

Community members can find out more about WhatsApp Crime groups in their area by contacting their local SAPS, ward councillors or activists.

Crime prevention is everybody’s business. Be vigilant, be proactive and take a stand against crime.