Page 1

FROM 1998 UNTIL 2018


DASHUND

CORG I

SETTE R

AIREDA LE

LE DA E R AI

LE AG BE

KABEL JOU

RIDGEBACK

WOODHILL SHOPPING CENTRE

F

SASOL GARAGE

COCKER

BETHEL CHAPEL

G

D AR RN BE ST

This Commemorative Book is a way to celebrate the milestones in GarsCom and to memorialize the event in print, creating a foundation for the next 20 years to come.

H

GREAT DANE PARK

ER RP KU OU BL

A STORY ABOUT ITS PEOPLE & EVENTS

SW AR TB AA RS

RE TR IEV ER FLORIANNE

CONTROL ROOM

ET IPP WH

ER RD E H

D

LL GI UE BL

GARSFONTEIN

B

JAGTER

IE SS LA

ER KS BO

A

LASSIE

E AN TD EA GR

N TIO MA L DA

ZIMBA

GREYHOUND

OR AD R B LA CK JO

F TIF AS M

S NI CA

UG KR ON PR

STO LORI

J

D AR RN BE ST

BOERB OEL

I BORZO

I BORZO

I

BORZOI

D N O H YS TR PA

PRETORIUS PARK

PROPERTY SHOP

ENGEN GARAGE

BORZOI PARK

IE KOLL

K

WINDHOND

E

C

R POINTE

R HE NC PI

PAT RY SH ON D

MORELETA SPRUIT

LANGU SOLOMON MAH

BORDEUX

M

WOODHILL GOLF ESTATE


The list:

2003

PROACTIVE MODEL l 06 CHUBB PARTNERSHIP l 06 NEWSLETTER l 06

B B A

CHUBB PATROL CAR l 08 STREET BRAAI l 08 WEBSITE LAUNCH l 08

B C A

E-NEWS & SMS ALERTS l 10 MARKET DAY l 10 DOMESTIC & GARDENER SECURITY TRAINING l 10

A G

FROM THE CHAIRPERSON l 02

A A

NAME & LOGO l 04

A

APHG AN

POOL HOND

2002

2006 2007

IS RV TIE

KING CARP

PALING

GEELV IS

C

BORDERS l 24 GARDEN COMPETITION l 24

M D

CCTV CAMERA SYSTEM l 26

B

STRATEGIC TEAM l 28 CONTROL ROOM l 28

K B

SOCIAL MEDIA l 30 RESIDENTS ASSOCIATION l 30

A A D A B

H

2010

2011 2012

2013

2014

PARK DEVELOPMENT l 12

C D

KYK-NET l 32 DATA MANAGEMENT l 32 ANIMAL ACTIVISTS l 32

SECTION 21 COMPANY l 14 SEPTEMBER DRIVE l 14 TWO-WAY RADIO NETWORK l 16 ENTRANCE BOARDS l 16

A A B I J

STREET CLEAN-UP l 34

D

TEAM BUILDING l 34

B

CARNIVAL l 36

B

NATIONAL l 36

D

2008

STEEKB AARD

BASE NJI

DINGO

MOF

GREAT D ANE

MIRRO R CARP

2004

2005

D ON DH OE BL

WAGTE R

TIERVIS

FOUNDED l 03 FIRST MEETING l 04

Y UR RB TE AT

BASSE T

D ON DH OE BL

1998

CHRISTMAS LIGHTS COMPETITION & BUS RIDE l 22

GREEN LIGHT PATROLS l 18 “POTJIEKOS” DAY l 18

F D

FAMILY FUN DAY l 20 RECOGNITION EVENING l 20 CALENDAR l 22

D H E

2009

2015 2016 2017 2018

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS l 38 VISION FOR THE FUTURE l 40


1


20

From the community - For the community

A lot has changed since GarsCom started with only a few people in our sitting room in 1998. Older residents think back to the days they considered keeping a gun at hand when they watched TV and went to bed, and now the Garsfontein Community is regularly rated first in CRIME PREVENTION in Gauteng. One learns to love the COMMUNITY as it is. We are a diverse group with different strengths, weaknesses, loves, fears, needs and concerns. Some people are completely unaware of everything that is going on around them, some are convinced that criminals or spies are digging a tunnel under their house and are watching them through the ceiling. Some people always complain and blame and never contribute, and some are always willing to help with a smile. We have the talkers and the doers. Some are unhappy because they do not live in the neighbouring golf estate and others are grateful that they are not one of the homeless neighbours.

Years We have different and sometimes conflicting ideas. We have good days and bad days, build successes and make mistakes to learn from. We are surrounded by even greater difference in the wealth of Woodhill Golf Estate and the poverty of Woodlane Village (previously Plastic View) and how we live together with both. GarsCom tries to focus on things that are important for us as a community and we are ALWAYS OPEN for a constructive discussion.

GarsCom is at its very core about community and about VOLUNTEERS. GarsCom volunteers have initiated a stunning range of PROJECTS over the years that have given us a sense of community, of being together. We are all so grateful to live in a community with such wonderful residents, and we look forward to the new residents who will join us in years to come and the value they too will bring.

Research indicates that community initiatives like GarsCom usually last six years. That makes us even more grateful that we can celebrate TWENTY years of GarsCom in 2018. Thank you to all who have made GarCom the community it is, and here’s to twenty more. Carol van Niekerk, GarsCom Chairperson


3

FOUNDED in 1998

by Carol van Niekerk

GarsCom is confined within the borders of: Woodhill Golf Estate, Atterbury Road, Solomon Mahlangu Drive & Garsfontein Road


‘98 ‘02

began when Carol van Niekerk inHow it all began GarsCom vited a few of her neighbours to the FIRST

MEETING at her home with the hope of making her street a safe and secure place for residents to live.

Her fellow neighbours were quick to follow her lead and soon the committee recruited more and more residents from their surrounding streets. Together they became an unstoppable force with a common goal of fighting crime hand-inhand, and there and then a community was born. It was not without blood, sweat or tears, but today GarsCom is proudly one of the biggest and most sustained, organised and successful communities in the whole of South Africa. With only a handful of motivated individuals, one meeting changed the lives of many and on the last Monday of every month since August 1998, Carol continues to host a meeting where the community comes together under the sacred roof of Bethel Chapel to better the lives of any and all who walk through the doors. the community grew and the comWhat’s in a name? As mittee expanded, the time came to settle on a name - a name by which each and every resident could identify with and say: “This is my home.”

As suggestions filled the hat, it was clear that we needed one NAME to say it all. It was quite simple really, looking at it from a geographical point of view - a community in the bosom of Garsfontein, the Garsfontein Community.

4

That being so, father and son, Johan and Stefan Lewies, conjured up the name “GarsCom” which was immediately approved by the founding committee and happily accepted by the community.

But a name can’t stand alone, it needs a face - an insignia to be worn proudly, a symbol of belonging and togetherness. While producing the first newsletter, Venessa Roelofse found the perfect LOGO - a circle image with a yellow house - which has remained the GarsCom logo to this day.


5


In Aug 2003 GarsCom printed the first words: “Welcome to our first GarsCom newsletter. We are very excited to start this new information system in our community.”

109 NEWSLETTERS

has been published thus far!

Our greatest asset

Prior to the year 2000, the Garsfontein precinct was rated in the Top 20 precincts with the worst crime levels in Gauteng. Today it is often rated first for crime prevention. How was such a transformation achieved? Through extensive research, community consultation, outreach and working hand-in-hand with the South African Police Services (SAPS), GarsCom developed the PROACTIVE MODEL. The model has grown to be one of the most successful crime prevention blueprints in the country, so much so that it has been adopted by numerous other neighbourhoods. Some of the key elements of the model are: partnering with one dedicated security provider and ensuring 24/7 patrols, a 24/7 control room, CCTV and LPR camera system, two-way radio communications network, security training for individuals, open communication lines, social and environmental projects etc.

‘03

The main reason for its success is because it follows a holistic 3-way (i.e. community; security company; SAPS) approach of taking preventative measures instead of acting in response. The decisive factors in safety are to be visible and to find strength in numbers. most crucial element in the Proactive Model is Our lifeline The working with one dedicated security provider. Gars-

Com reached out to all the security companies represented in the area and after in-depth interviews and careful consideration, Chubb Fire & Security officially became GarsCom’s preferred dedicated security provider.

The CHUBB PARTNERSHIP has yielded many benefits i.e: competitive rates; financial contribution; 24/7 patrolling with short reaction time; technical support and so much more.

6

A normal reactive service does not prevent crime and the security provider only arrives on the scene once the crime has been committed. An alarm does not prevent a burglary and a lot of harm can be done before the reactive service arrives. However, a gentleman’s agreement with only one dedicated security provider has proved that acting proactively is the best means of preventing crime and the crime statistics have shown exactly that.


7


September 2004 GarsCom went live!

WEBSITE LAUNCH

Initially the website was designed by Stephan Potgieter and financed by Chubb, but over the years the project was handed over to the next capable computer enthusiast who has ensured its growth.

Peace of mind

The first cornerstone in the Chubb Partnership was making two vehicles available to patrol the streets of GarsCom 24/7. The agreement stipulated that if the target of 350 Chubb clients in the GarsCom area was reached, Chubb will allocate one patrol vehicle as well as a second one if the target of 700 Chubb clients was met.

‘04 GarsCom and Chubb worked tirelessly together to reach the targets and so on the 12th of February 2004 the first CHUBB PATROL CAR, designated and dedicated to GarsCom area alone, was deployed. On the 14th of May 2004, Pieter Pretorius, one of the first dedicated Chubb officers, made the first arrest in GarsCom while on patrol.

“Wanneer gaan ons braai?”T

8

The GarsCom committee consisted of a number of street representatives with the goal to having a representative in every street. This was customarily achieved by throwing a couple of tenderised choppies on the fire and gathering around the residents of each street to socialise, share stories of the old wild west days and to inspire community involvement.

The first STREET BRAAI was held on the 21st of February 2004 in the Borzoi Park with great success. Residents from the nearby streets were invited to a meet-and-greet with the GarsCom committee and Chubb personnel while their children enjoyed bouncing up and down on the jumping castle.


9

1


10

E-NEWS & SMS ALERTS were introduced early 2005

with the aim of communicating important information about crime and the community via email or sms. Today GarsCom continues to engage with the community with weekly informative newsletters.

Homemade with love

GarsCom’s 0 first 0MARKET DAY was held on the 27th of April 2005 at the Woodhill Shopping Centre. Due to popular demand it soon moved to the Great Dane Park and turned into a regular event.

‘05 It was a day of great fun for the whole family! Stalls selling anything from fresh produce to arts and crafts lined up the sidewalk while music, delightful surprises and other entertainment kept the day alive. Exciting prizes were up for grabs and there were even fun activities for the children to enjoy.

he0safety Bring in reinforcements Tand security 0

of the community has always been GarsCom’s number one priority, not only for the residents but for anyone who visits or works in the area including domestic and garden workers. While busy at work or out doing errands, many houses are often left in the hands of a domestic and/or garden worker. They are the caretakers of your home and unfortunately also an easy target for crime. Thus GarsCom initiated the DOMESTIC & GARDENER SECURITY TRAINING workshop.

The first workshop commenced on the 20th of June 2005 and is still being held annually over a couple of days. The workers receive training in basic self-defense and are provided with safety and security information to better protect themselves and your home.


11

1


12

there Our natural habitat InareGarsCom two open green areas known as the Borzoi Park in Borzoi Street and the Great Dane Park in Great Dane Street. The parks provide residents with a place to enjoy themselves - to take your dog for a stroll, to picnic with loved ones, to play ball or to simply grab some fresh air. For a long time these parks had been neglected and misused, and attracted individuals engaging in illegal activities. In 2006 GarsCom started the PARK DEVELOPMENT project in the hope of creating and maintaining a space that is safe and friendly not only for residents to utilise but also to host community events.

‘06 With helping hands from the community and liaising with the ward councillors and municipality, GarsCom was and still is successful in keeping up with this project.

First on the agenda was to put up lights at both parks which was alone a major improvement in terms of security. The next priority was to revive the few patches of grass into manicured lawns and to ensure the maintenance of these.

Thereafter the focus was on the Borzoi Park and in a short period of time GarsCom was able to bring in and erect jungle gyms that immediately transformed the park with colour and vitality. In celebration of National Arbour Week in 2008, residents got their hands dirty and planted indigenous trees in the Borzoi Park. These trees were carefully selected for their resilience, attractiveness to birds and insects, and their ability to provide shade.

Today these two parks with their trees standing tall are, without a doubt, one of GarsCom’s proudest accomplishments.


13

1


14

On the 26th of April 2007 GarsCom was officially instated as a

SECTION 21 COMPANY and inaugurated the first Board of Directors.

‘07

Section 21 companies resemble business oriented companies in their legal structure, but do not have a share capital and cannot distribute shares or pay dividends to their members.

owes its sustained Yellow in the sun GarsCom growth and success to the involve-

ment of may residents over the years.

In February 2007 GarsCom began a campaign to increase community engagement. There are about 2 600 households altogether in GarsCom, subdivided into 19 blocks each with a team consisting of a block-leader, street representatives and volunteers. GarsCom volunteers took to the streets and went door-to-door with yellow buckets in hand filled with all-you-need-to-know information. The aim of this exercise was to create awareness of GarsCom’s vision and mission to encourage community support and involvement, big or small. This became an annual project stretched out over the month of September which was later dubbed as the SEPTEMBER DRIVE. Every September, bright yellow GarsCom gazebos decorate the street corners while volunteers go from door to door engaging with community members and distributing marketing material. The WhatsApp street admins also play an important role as they assist in providing live information through to residents as the day unfolds.


1


16

On the 20th of October 2007 GarsCom proudly erected the two

ENTRANCE BOARDS

at the corner of St Bernard Drive & Borzoi Street and at the second entrance in Loristo Street.

‘07

“Delta Delta, kom in vir Behe TWO-WAY RADIO NETvir Beheer” The WORK is undeniably the most essential communication system in any security organisation and is likely one of the most complex systems to construct and maintain. It took a team of specialised experts, technicians, programmers and a lot of diligence to get the system off the ground and to establish the network where it is today with a reach of about 50km radius around GarsCom, when in direct line of sight to the repeater. GarsCom introduced the first range of Zartek radios in April 2007 and later switched over to the prefered Kirisun brand selling them at cost price from GarsCom’s trusted supplier 3G Telecommunications.

The radio network enables residents who own radios to contact the GarsCom Control Room by the touch of a button, who too are in direct contact via radios with relevant emergency service providers. Besides the fact that it facilitates immediate reaction in the case of an emergency, it is also a means of communicating important information about potential threats to prevent criminal activities.


17

1


18

a small group of volunteers that Our true warriors GarsCom are fighting to keep the community safe and secure.

There are about 100 individuals sacrificing their time, day and night throughout the whole year, patrolling the streets of GarsCom - they are the eyes and ears of the community, reporting any suspicious activities and potential threats to the GarsCom Control Room. The GREEN LIGHT PATROLS consist of several teams, each managed by a team coordinator with each team member having a scheduled two-hour shift to patrol the area using their own vehicles and fuel. Every patroller is equiped with a radio, a green light on the roof and a “GarsCom Patrols” magnetic sticker on the side of the vehicle. It was with great pride and gratification, and a little bit of suspense, when the first scheduled patrols took to the streets on the 4th of May 2008.

‘08

On occasion, in addition to the Green Light Patrols, GarsCom also takes part in mass patrols together with SAPS, Metro Police, other security providers and neighbouring communities. Whether the initiator, the organiser or simply the backup, GarsCom is always ready for action and willing to assit in any way. The first mass patrol in GarsCom was held on the 9th of May 2008. SAPS operated the vehicle check points at the two entrances of GarsCom and other security providers were positioned in the bordering main roads while the Green Light Patrols along with volunteers patrolled the whole area. It was a triumphant success and has set the benchmark for all future mass patrols. Visibility is our number one priority in the act of crime prevention and a crucial factor in keeping the Proactive Model intact.

of the winter on the “Nou maak ons potjie” In12ththeofheart July 2008 the Green Light Patrols committee hosted a POTJIEKOS DAY - what a joyous occasion it was and became yet another event permanently marked on the GarsCom calendar.

The whole community is invited to enjoy the day and to feast on various “potjiekos”, deliciously prepared by teams representing the GarsCom project or group they are supporting. Judges make their rounds, tasting from every pot and after some mouthful deliberation prizes are presented to the winners.


19

2


20

9th of May 2009 was a Did someone say fun? The day to be remembered for many years to come. It was the highlight of the year and every year thereafter.

The dozens of Market Days that took place throughout the year had become so popular and grown so big that GarsCom created a huge annual event to be held in Great Dane Park and thereafter to be known as FAMILY FUN DAY. It is a day jam-packed with fun, fun and more fun. You will find anything and everything from “boerewors rolletjies” to homemade soaps, second-hand treasures, cleverly-designed gadgets and fine jewellery. And when your pockets are empty from buying all sorts of goodies there is a list of varying exciting activities and shows to enjoy i.e. fun run / walk, “boeresport” games, treasure hunt, K-9 police demonstrations, fire engine look-see tours, drum majorettes, performing artists etc.

‘09

But that’s not all! If the live entertainment does not keep you on the edge of your seat then a visit to the famous Polkadot Tea Garden is sure to satisfy your sweet tooth. There is even a kids corner where the children are charmed by farm animals, face painting, “bak en brou” and more.

Last but not the least, do not forget about the wonderful competitions where plenty of prizes are up for grabs like the renowned dog competition where the furry animals take center stage to strut their stuff. year GarsCom hosts And the winner is... Every RECOGNITION EVENING

a to celebrate and honour the members of the community for their contributions, generosity and hard work. It is a fine event with good food, great company, special guests and lots of prizes, rewards and awards.

Initially the event was known as the Achievers Awards Ceremony and took place on the eve of the Family Fun Day. The first gala dinner was held on the 9th of May 2009 at the Woodhill Clubhouse where GarsCom crowned its very first GarsCommer of the year, Deon Thomas. Awards were also presented to the winners who were nominated by the community for being the best in their category i.e. Chubb Officer, Patrol Coordinator, Patrol Team, Business, Street and Unsung Hero.


21


All year round there is always something exciting to look forward to in GarsCom and to ensure that nothing was ever missed, GarsCom launched its very own annual

CALENDAR in 2009.

is everyWhat a jolly ride Christmas one’s favourite time

‘09 of the year and if you live in GarsCom you wouldn’t want to miss out on all the joyful merrymaking.

From Santa’s bottomless bag GarsCom pulls out all the stops - Christmas hampers for the well-deserved, an eventful Christmas market, delightful treats for the children, a picnic in the park and carols by candle light. But wait there’s more...

What makes it so special during this festive season is that at night the whole of GarsCom comes alive with vibrant flashing lights, decorating the houses and streets with bright colours. And if your house shines the best you win a prize!

22

At the end of every year since 2009 residents can enter their houses into the CHIRSTMAS LIGHTS COMPETITION. The community votes for the best lit-up houses and the winners are each rewarded for their creative talents. To join in with the high spirits of the competition community members are invited to enjoy a merry BUS RIDE through the colourful streets to marvel at the lights and appreciate the efforts of the competitors. It truely is a magical time to be a GarsCommer.


23


In 2010 GarsCom attended to the residential area’s

BORDERS

This project continued in 2016 with Ruan Roberts leading on the repair of the border walls, complete with advertising billboards and landscaping, with the legal endorsement and support of Tshwane Municipality and the Metro Police.

‘10

the be“Waar jy saai sal jy maai” Atginning of

the year 2010 GarsCom challenged its residents to get their hands dirty and to start digging.

The GARDEN COMPETITION soon became very popular among the garden enthusiasts and those with green fingers. Year after year, residents who entered their gardens, big or small, had to polish their gardening skills and work tirelessly around the clock to get their gardens in shape for the final judging. Those who preferred to keep their knees clean were also in for a treat as they were welcomed with big smiles into the prize-winning gardens. It is a cheerful time with everyone having fun in the sun.

24

During the prize-giving of the 2016 Garden Competition, GarsCom’s garden contestants started a Garden Friends group. The objective in mind is to discuss gardening issues, to share garden secrets, attend a DIY workshop here and there and of course to sip tea and make friends. To date this group of like-minded people has grown and blossomed into another proud initiative that makes the GarsCom community a true community.


25


just a dePeekaboo, I see you After cade, GarsCom

was on everyone’s lips, embroidered on everyone’s chests, it was hip and happening and expanding by the day, but the dismal reality of escalating and endless crime cast a dark shadow over the hearts of the community. With the odd 2 600 households, a business centre and about 6 000 vehicles driving through the two entrances every day, it was physically impossible to establish a security boom access controlled area. GarsCom, in collaboration with Chubb, had to come up with an innovative solution to keep the community members safe.

‘11

The measures taken thus far in curbing crime in GarsCom had been successful for quite some time, but due to the increasing sophistication in criminality, it became necessary to look afresh at the challenges. The CCTV CAMERA SYSTEM project was set in motion Oct 2011. The installation of the CCTV cameras at the two entrances of GarsCom was but merely the beginning of a new era in the history of GarsCom.

Given their effective placement at strategic spots and the development of a control room from which the cameras can be monitored and all other activities can be coordinated, GarsCom was certain that greater value would be added to its security initiatives.

26

It did, however, come with a heavy price tag. GarsCom had to reach deep into their pockets and appeal to the community for financial support. Along with the contributions from Ultimate Linux Solutions (ULS) and Chubb, over time GarsCom was able to install over 20 cameras throughout the whole area, including License Plate Recognition (LPR) cameras.


27


In 2012 the GarsCom Directors appointed a

STRATEGIC TEAM

The main objective of this team is to identify the strengths and weaknesses of the Proactive Model by investigating and strategising possible solutions as well as coordinating the implementation of these solutions.

Police FoWho you gonna call? Community rum (CPF) structures,

24/7 armed patrols, community-based patrols, radio netwoks and other security initiatives certainly influence crime trends, but without proper systems and procedures in place many of these efforts can be unproductive. The establishment of a community-driven control room as an information proxy between SAPS, security providers and the community has a massive, proven impact on crime reduction. Due to the growth in the number of Chubb clients, GarsCom eventually qualified for a third Chubb patrol vehicle, but by agreement between Chubb and GarsCom it was decided that instead of a third vehicle, it would be more cost-effective and beneficial to the community to develop a control room which is partly funded by Chubb.

‘12

In 2012, GarsCom was geared with an army of techinicians, electricians, programmers and experts to establish the GarsCom CONTROL ROOM - GarsCom took the bull by the horns and contracted Tacticom Security to take the lead and once the location for the new control room was secured, generously sponsored by a GarsCom homeowner, the operation was in full swing. ULS donated the main mast to support the telecommunitcations and broadcasting equipment and, together with Chubb, Tacticom Security and several other specialised service providers, GarsCom designed and constructed a 24/7 fully operational, state-of-the-art control room manned by GarsCom-dedicated Chubb operators.

28

The control room serves as a central hub from where all the cameras and radio communications are managed and monitored. Among many other benefits, the control room provides services such as emergency support, incident control, radio assistance, lookouts for potential threats, patrol coordination etc. whilst keeping detailed records of all occurrences. The control room will always be evolving and, although not without challenges, the control room is definitely the biggest milestone GarsCom has accomplished thus far. It is the primary contributing factor in the success of upholding the Proactive Model and combating crime.


29


the year 2013 SOCIAL MEDIA Staying connected By was already deeply embedded within our culture and rapidly becoming an integral part of our daily lives. For this reason and the fact that it is considered to be the most effective method in communicating information to and from the masses, GarsCom joined the web of virtual networking.

In total there are 60 streets in GarsCom, most of which are represented by a WhatsApp street administrator who is solely responsible for circulating GarsCom and security related information to the residents within their street via the WhatsApp street group. Furthermore, GarsCom created a closed Facebook group also for dispensing vital information, as well as encouraging the community to share their thoughts and feelings with each other and to voice their needs and concerns.

‘13

Managing these new communication platforms can be challenging as society learns to navigate the complexities of social media, but these platforms have brought far more advantages than disadvantages and are most certainly powerful tools for the GarsCom of the future.

Strategic Team came into being when Closer together The concern was raised about the long-term via-

bility of a community association that was purely built on the support of volunteers and donations. The team studied the most successful residential and community bodies in the country and concluded that GarsCom was in dire need of a structured residents association with monthly fees. The income generated would allow for the procurement of professional services like accountants, auditors, legal services etc. while funding community projects and security initiatives internally.

30

As a result, GarsCom introduced the GarsCom RESIDENTS ASSOCIATION (GRA) in September 2013 which has grown from strength to strength with a membership in excess of 450. In addition to the 800+ Chubb clients within the area, of which Chubb contributes R42 per client monthly, GarsCom was able to fund the resourcing and operation of the 24/7 control room, the continuous maintenance of the camera system and radio network, administrative and financial services, marketing material and merchandise, communication platforms, social events, outreach projects and much more. All of which GRA members can benefit from, including being part of the safest community in the Garsfontein policing precinct.


31


GarsCom went live on television in 2014 in one of the episodes of the

KYK-NET

“Dagbreek” program.

the GRA was founded, the adminisBehind the scene Since trative leg of the GarsCom organisational structure grew substantially in a short period of time. Consequently, at the beginning of 2014, GarsCom had to outsource its administrative tasks and form a team to manage the endless amount of data.

Valuable improvements have been made in the development of the GarsCom adminstrative system. The DATA MANAGEMENT project deemed to be very fruitfull and has been successful in establishing a consistent and sustainable approach. In an effort to create a master database, the data management team worked tirelessly integrating various databases, a very complex process, from all areas of the organisation i.e. residents association, security, marketing and communication, finance and community projects.

‘14

As part of the project, the team set out to develop a Geographic Information System (GIS) specifically for the control room. The main purpose of this system is to display geographic and member information quickly and effortlessly in the case of an emergency. The system, known as the GarsCom Member Infomation (GMI) system, was designed and built by Schalk Lotz, In addition to the GMI another information system emerged - The GarsCom Suppliers website, a fully searchable consumer and supplier resource developed, managed and funded by Steven Maier.

consists of many animal lovers Because we care GarsCom and some have taken the liberty in forming an ANIMAL ACTIVISTS group within the community.

In 2014, the group known as the My Best Friend Group was formed with the aims of reuniting lost pets with their owners, and the fostering and adoption of lost and neglected pets.

32

In the spirit of animal activism, the For4Paws database was created which holds the necessary details of registered pet owners to aid in the identification of lost pets.

Today, this group of over 60 members, currently known as the Missing Pets Group, persists in their pursuit of finding happiness for GarsCom’s furry friends.


33


‘15 ‘16 inspiring initiative to honour the 67 Minutes The legacy of the late former President, Mr Nelson Mandela, through volunteering and community service, has been running in GarsCom since 18 July 2015.

The Mandela STREET CLEAN-UP project usually takes place on a Saturday close to Mandela Day, when the crusaders of the community march down the streets with a refuse bag in hand, and give 67 minutes of their time to pick up litter and create a cleaner environment.

As well, a local gardener, Jan Phuti, was hired to assist with the cleaning of litter in and around GarsCom’s main streets and parks on a bi-weekly basis.

Teamwork makes the the control room bethe dream work As came more functional T

there were a few growing pains regarding the working relationships between the control room operators and the Chubb patrol officers, with whom they work very closely. All the operators had no prior experience with this kind of control room. Likewise, the patrol officers were not used to handling control room operators. GarsCom therefore decided to organise a TEAM BUILDING day that was held on the 18th of March 2016. Due to the great success of the day it became an annual event. The aim of the day is on building effective team-working skills and also developing relationships outside of the working environment.

34

The proceedings of the day usually kick off with a cup of coffee, rusks and some small talk. Then after a game or two to break the ice, problems and personal issues are discussed and strategies are recommended on how to resolve them. By that time lunch is served and everyone can enjoy each other’s company and an afternoon of leisure.


35


‘17 ‘18

hosted a Fun for all and all for fun GarsCom CARNIVAL that took

place on the 2nd of December 2017 at the Great Dane Park, in celebration of GarsCom’s 20th anniversary.

The day started off with a 5km fun run / walk through the GarsCom neighbourhood, in which all various age groups participated, creating great camaraderie and sportsmanship. Numerous stalls ranging from food, arts and crafts, non-profit organisations, craft beer and local interest groups were on display. Various arena events were hosted to entertain the visitors on the day, as well as to provide a “lekker” atmosphere. The children were treated to fun activities, from the spook tent to jumping castles. The GarsCom Community Tent provided much needed shade and seating where people enjoyed refreshments and a good mingle. Highlights of the day were the dog competition and the Drum Majorettes who performed marvellously. The day concluded with the traditional Christmas carols and Christmas lights bus ride to showcase those houses which provided some festive cheer and energy to the community. It was an unforgettable day that made one feel proud to be a GarsCommer. the beginning of 2018, Proudly South African AtChubb Fire & Security commenced with their re-branding under the new name, National Security & Fire.

Chubb sold 100% of its South African business to a black economic empowerment consortium. The move followed the passing of the Private Security Industry Regulation Amendment Bill, which proposed that multinationals relinquish 51% or more of their shareholding to local investors.

36

NATIONAL, through its people and processes, will continue to protect the lives and property of its clients and staff. They provide modern technology and excellent service by qualified professionals who thoroughly understand the needs of their clients and the community. The partnership agreement between GarsCom and National remains unchanged and stronger than ever before. Both parties are confident in their ability to provide the highest quality solutions in fighting crime together and to endorse the Proactive Model.


37


When reflecting on the past 20 years, it is evident what GarsCom has accomplished in the interest of the safety and promotion of the community. We wish to praise our Heavenly Father who enabled us to meet our responsibilities and obligations. off to all the Members of the Board from 1998 until 2018 for their visionary leadership, the work you have Directors Hats done and just walking the extra mile. all the big and small ways in which you have pitched in, thank you very much! You have helped the Volunteers For community in so many ways:

ENVIRONMENT: Garden competitions, garden groups, street cleaning, bird lovers groups, recycling, research for energy saving, caring for the parks and spruit, tree planting and much more.

SECURITY: All patrol coordinators managing patrol teams to make sure that GarsCom has a patrol team on duty every day and night - the reduction in crime in GarsCom shows how big your contribution has been. For those working tirelessly in the control room establishing radio and camera systems. The control room operators and National (previously Chubb) officers and all they do. For everyone involved with the domestic and gardener security training. MARKETING: All those who have assisted with marketing over the years. The project leaders and volunteers who work tirelessly to build an involved community; the different communication structures and those who manage them - entrance boards, website, calendars , meetings, newsletters, social media, the suppliers list etc. ADMINISTRATION: The strategic team who work endlessly to find the way forward; the data management system; financial management; audits of the GarCom books; relationship management of SAPS and Metro and neighbouring communities and the CPF; the webstmster; the designers, editors and printers of publications. These tasks have been done with great enthusiasm.

ThX!

sincere gratitude to every business that has contributed over the past 20 years to build GarsCom in Businesses Our numerous ways such as financially, availing facilities, removing fallen trees from our streets or driveways. This relationship with your community is surely unique and has assisted us to grow.

you to all the many residents who have contributed financially. All contriFinancial Contributors Thank butions have enabled us to start GarsCom and execute projects that helped us to reach our goal of an open, safe, friendly and involved community.

who have visited a next door neighbour, who have treated their domestics Community Members People in a humane way, who have assisted a stranger and a waste picker – you have all contributed to the spirit of GarsCom and we thank you.

In GarsCom there are so many individuals who contribute to the common good in their own way and build our community in small acts of goodness. GARSCOM SALUTES YOU ALL!


“People with a passion, working hard together towards a common goal – to create a community they can be proud to be associated with and feel safe raising their children in.” ~ Property Shop “Julle het my net weereens laat besef, watter voorreg dit is om in GarsCom woonagtig te wees. Dat daar nog mense in vandag se tyd is wat so saamstaan en betrokke is.” ~ Dietmar “I have received so much more in return than what I have given out and I am truely grateful to be part of this wonderful community. Money can’t buy what we have here.” ~ Deon “The success of any business in the GarsCom area depends on the relationship with the community and we encourage other businesses in GarsCom to get involved.” ~ Sasol St. Bernard “Though we are many, we stand as one, to protect and to serve together” ~ Miki “Our community setup is very, very unique. Today it makes a huge difference to have a connection with your neighbours.” ~ Craig “GarsCom is fantastic and what made us join is the feeling of community, family, and support among all of us in the area.” ~ Woodhill Spar “Ek bars van trots om deel van ‘n gemeenskapsforum te wees met die naam van GarsCom.” ~ Gerida “To all parties working so hard for our safety, you are saluted for your initiatives and input. I am so proud to be part of the group working towards solutions for our problems.” ~ Mariana

39

“GarsCom is the actual “glue” that keeps the community together and we are proud to be a business in this area.” ~ Engen Gerhaldo “Not only am I celebrating the past 20 years with GarsCom, but also the next 20 years that lie ahead. Though my part was small, the community became a big part of my heart, they are family. Good luck to the next generation, they have very big shoes to fill.” ~ Ilana

F


The Future Through the looking glass

GarsCom’s vision is to be a safe, friendly, involved and open community. Our shining SUCCESS with safety could only be achieved because enough residents worked TOGETHER to make the community safer. When each household tries alone to protect itself, and where there are uncoordinated initiatives, crime escalates. Crime is not our only threat. With climate CHANGE becoming a global PRIORITY, with water becoming scarce, as fossil fuels are running out, as our dump sites are filling up, as the sea is on its way to have more plastic than fish, as we have lots of micro-plastic in our own water, and the gap between rich and poor continues to widen, we have a role to play in the search for ways to become a SUSTAINABLE community.

Bank Details: GarsCom ABSA (632005) Acct Nr. 4068 919 875

Control Room: 084 550 0826 / 012 993 0402 enquiries@garscom.co.za www.garscom.co.za

Again, a lot can be done by combining household and community initiatives. We must relate to people in our midst, including those who work in our gardens and homes. And we must relate to communities around us, including Woodlane Village, previously known as Plastic View.

Maybe we can adjust our VISION, and come together to be a passionate, open, safe, caring and sustainable community! For me, that would be an expression of my FAITH in Christ. Attie van Niekerk, GarsCom Resident & Volunteer


Open,

SAFE, friendly & INVOLVED

Profile for ilanavdm

The GarsCom Community. From 1998 until 2018  

A STORY ABOUT ITS PEOPLE & EVENTS - This Commemorative Book is a way to celebrate the milestones in GarsCom and to memorialize the event in...

The GarsCom Community. From 1998 until 2018  

A STORY ABOUT ITS PEOPLE & EVENTS - This Commemorative Book is a way to celebrate the milestones in GarsCom and to memorialize the event in...

Profile for ilanavdm
Advertisement