Davenport police and city leaders want people to get to know their neighbors. They say it can help foster understanding and empathy in the community.
The Davenport Good Neighbor Project is part of an effort to improve communication between neighbors and make the city a better place to live.
One of the models for the project was the Van Buren Park neighborhood.
“The goodness that you see within a neighborhood or community and to see that spread, that’s been pretty cool.” That’s what Jeff Banks has been seeing since the Van Buren Park neighborhood association started meeting.
“Getting neighbors to get together to get to know each other, and look out for each other,” Banks said. “We’ve done some beautification projects, where we’re looking at picking up trash, or getting together to just to see how we can make the neighborhood better.”
Neighbors there formed the association a year ago to help improve conditions around their homes.
Banks says that if you’re unsure if your neighborhood will respond, you should try organizing and see what happens.
“When I first started, we thought well, there might be some people interested in gathering, but to see each month, the amount of people that get together, and just get to know each other, it’s been really neat to see,” Banks said.
Davenport police sergeant Andrew Harris says that the goal of the good neighbor project is to help people improve their neighborhoods, and help them to resolve issues within them more productively.
“Certain neighborhoods, people aren’t talking to each other,” Harris said. “So we just need to remind that we’re all in this togehter and we do have those small issues that we can work together to try to first address those issues and if they need our assistance, we’re here to help them out too.”
More than 25 neighborhoods in Davenport signed up for the good neighbor project so far.