No. 18




From brutal crime to a strong civic association

  • Tiina Ristmäe

    Managing Director, NGO Estonian Neighbourhood Watch

  • Lauri Tabur

    Research and Development Director, Public Service Academy; Ph.D. student in innovation policy, Tallinn University of Technology

Neighbourhood Watch, conceived in the United States in the 1960s and 1970s, reached Estonia on 2 May 2000, when the first Neighbourhood Watch cooperative agreement was signed in the Nõmme district of Tallinn.

Three days later, the foundation was laid for the NGO of the same name, to spread the new idea throughout the country. The first Neighbourhood Watch know-how was obtained primarily from England, where the programme was launched in the 1980s and where 10 million residents now take part in it. Today we have reached the point where we can share our knowledge with others. One of the special qualities of neighbourhood watch in Estonia is the cooperative agreement. This is a four-party agree-ment, in which the local government, police, NGO Estonian Neighbourhood Watch and the neighbourhood sector agree on how they will act jointly to increase security in a certain area. High-profile and official signatories are a sign to the population that the heads of various organizations also acknowledge and value their efforts.

Full article in Estonian