Fort Ordnance group tackling developmental issues

The establishment of a Community Policing Group to help tackle the crime wave in the Fort Ordnance Housing Scheme (East Canje, Berbice) is one of the major accomplishments of DAFO.

Formed in January 2013, the Development Association of Fort Ordinance (DAFO) is a community-based group aimed at developing the relatively new housing scheme economically, socially and environmentally. Thus, from its inception, the group identified several areas on which to focus its attention including Security, Youth Development, Women’s Welfare and Sports.

DAFO Executive Members: (L to R - Back row) Vice-Chairman Collin Caesar, Chairman Stanley Jacobs and Treasurer Adrian Bess. (L to R - Front) Women’s Welfare officer Rohini Sooklall and Youth Development Officer Glenn Shivrattan
DAFO Executive Members: (L to R – Back row) Vice-Chairman Collin Caesar, Chairman Stanley Jacobs and Treasurer Adrian Bess. (L to R – Front) Women’s Welfare officer Rohini Sooklall and Youth Development Officer Glenn Shivrattan

The housing scheme which is approximately 12 years old was plagued with breaking and entering and burglaries, armed robberies and a few petty crimes. To curb the crime rate, the main goal of the association in its first year was to establish a community policing group and this became a reality in October 2013. “The shops in the area as well as the residences of villagers were the main targets of ‘junkies’ seeking to make a quick dollar so as to afford their next ‘fix’,” DAFO chairman Stanley Jacobs explained. “We as a community decided that we need to be each other’s keepers. Even though we came from different parts of the country to live here, we realized that we are now one big extended family who needs to watch each other’s back; that’s the only way we are going to survive.”

Jacobs disclosed that in the past, residents would “mind their own business and not pay attention to what was happening in the community around them.” However, with the establishment of the community policing group, residents have become more active and vigilant and they have seen a visible decrease in petty crimes perpetrated in the housing scheme.

The group has a five-member executive committee which includes Jacobs as chairman, Collin Caesar as vice-chairman, Adrian Bess as treasurer, Glenn Shivrattan – Youth Officer and Rohini Sooklall – Women’s Welfare Officer. They meet twice per month to discuss ways in which they can further improve and develop the housing scheme.

“We saw the need for an association in the scheme because while it is a government created housing scheme, there is only so much the government does in terms of development and we as residents can and should contribute towards the development of the community in which we live,” said Caesar who is responsible for the planning and execution of the group’s fund raising activities. Currently, the group is undertaking two major projects, namely the installation of street lights and the naming of the streets in the housing scheme. To accomplish the former, a Bar-B-Que/Fun Day was held last year in the ball field at the entrance of the housing scheme to raise funds. Monies garnered were used to purchase three street lights which will be installed in the neighbourhood in the not so distant future.

While the association is already one year old it is still yet to receive the full support of all the residents of the community, a situation the executive committee is hoping to change in 2014, since the accomplishments of its goals is dependent on its fund raisers and the support of public spirited persons both residents and non-residents of the fort Ordinance Housing Scheme. To this end, the executive members are embarking on a membership drive. “We are there to help the community and are asking for the cooperation of all the residents of Fort Ordinance Housing Scheme,” remarked Caesar who went on to encourage persons to “feel free to come on board; we are willing to take advice, so approach us.”

More in Local News


About these comments

The comments section is intended to provide a forum for reasoned and reasonable debate on the newspaper's content and is an extension of the newspaper and what it has become well known for over its history: accuracy, balance and fairness. We reserve the right to edit or delete comments which contain attacks on other users, slander, coarse language and profanity, and gratuitous and incendiary references to race and ethnicity.

Get the day's headlines from SN in your inbox every morning:

Most Read This Week

  1. Convicted drug trafficker Barry Dataram about to be handed over to local enforcement officials by the Suriname police. Inset is the information page in the fake passport for “David Persaud” that was being used by the fugitive. (Royston Drakes photos)

    Dataram, wife returned to Guyana

  2. Back in court: In this Keno George composite photo, Barry Dataram (left) and his wife Anjanie Boodnarine at court yesterday to answer three charges including fleeing the jurisdiction.

    Dataram to serve eight years in jail after guilty plea to new charges

  3. Yansen Brusche

    Ulverston mom of four stabbed to death by children’s father

  4. Ameer Subrati

    Man dies after bandits target overseas-based couple at Herstelling

  5. US Ambassador Perry Holloway and Finance Minister Winston Jordan shake hands after the signing of the agreement yesterday.

    Guyana inks pact for reporting to IRS on holdings of US citizens

  6. Updated: Man dies after bandits attack overseas-based Guyanese at Herstelling

  7. Barry Dataram

    Datarams getaway passports had been issued to other people

  8. Dr. Prudence Lewis-Bhola

    Prudence Lewis-Bhola appointed as CEO of broadcasting authority

  9. Bharrat Jagdeo

    Crime has never been this bad – Jagdeo

Recommended For You