Br Kevin Mascarenhas has become part of an initiative to tackle crime in the Barrack Street are of Waterford. Residents in the area have established a Neighbourhood Watch Scheme and Br Kevin is acting as secretary.
Brother Kevin said the idea had been there for some time but that the death of Paddy Barry, who lived in nearby Mount Sion Avenue, had heightened the need for one.
"A lot of people in the area are elderly and they are afraid. Some people have experienced burglaries and there is an awful lot of fear around. The idea of the scheme has been there for sometime but it has grown because of what happened to Paddy Barry."
Brother Kevin said they had held meetings with residents in the area and a number of people had shown an interest in becoming involved. He hoped it would make people feel more secure.
Sergeant PJ Murphy of the Community Policing Section of Waterford Gardaí said that those who take part in the Neighbourhood Watch Scheme are the "eyes and ears" for the Gardaí.
"It is very effective. No one knows a neighbourhood better than the people who live there. There is no better person to know if there is anyone strange hanging about or if anything is out of place."
In Waterford city alone there are over 34 schemes up and running. Sergeant Murphy said homeowners of all ages are involved, not just elderly people, and that all share the common aim of cutting down crime.
The Gardaí liaise with the groups, attend meetings and provide information.
Photo 1: Residents Committee: Henry Halligan (Vice-Chairman), Br Kevin Mascarenhas (Secretary), Mary Ryan (Treasurer), Richie Ryan (Chairman). Photo courtesy of Mr Joe Evans.