Familiar around Auckland and based on the Maori Warden Scheme introduced in the 1950s, the Pacific Wardens Scheme has finally made its way to Avondale with a Whau Pacific Wardens scheme being launched in May.
The scheme falls out of the Whau Local Board’s Pacific Strategic Plan and has been pulled together collectively by Council, the Whau Local Board and the Avondale Community Policing team under the guidance of local inspector Tony Tatupu.
The Wardens are volunteers who walk the local beat to deter “at risk” youth from getting into trouble. The wardens will walk through Avondale wearing easily identifiable high visibility vests provided by the Whau Local Board, and members of the community are most welcome to join them.
Elsewhere their presence has acted to provide a greater sense of security as kids are less likely to act up with guardians being visible.
The emphasis of the Wardens is to form strong relationships with people in the community as well a close working relationship with the police.
Already 16 volunteers have been vetted and trained, particularly on how to deal with some of our community’s most vulnerable. Many of the volunteers have been seconded from the Walking Samoans group who have already grown to have strong relationships within the Avondale community.
Our Avondale wardens will be based at the fale at 50 Rosebank Road before eventually moving to the Avondale Police Station.
To begin, the wardens will operate in Avondale only, before expanding into other suburbs of the Whau. The project is not limited to Pacific people, with interest from several ethnicities and an eventual vision toward a unified Whau wardens association.
Should you wish to become a Pacific Warden, application forms may be found at the station, or contact:
Savea Al Harrington Lavea
Pacific Wardens Coordinator
Avondale Community Police