We started in Beaumaris and Black Rock but our vision is bigger. We know our concept works and would like to expand, first throughout Bayside and then, who knows. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could clean up the whole of Melbourne! A big vision but with people power and commitment, everything is possible.
In November 2018, Neighbourhood Watch 3193 Volunteers and Committee Members Geoff Bransbury, Ken Beadle and Duncan Gibson decided to do something to get rid of graffiti in Beaumaris. They formed “Graffiti Busters-Bayside” (within Neighbourhood Watch). The results have been overwhelmingly successful and have exceeded all expectations.
The founders believed there were many like minded people who hated graffiti and were prepared to get their hands dirty to help eliminate it. They believed that all that was needed was a structure, rules, a process and some leadership to make it happen. This has all proved to be true.
The success speaks for itself. In just a few months, most graffiti has been removed from Beaumaris and Black Rock is well underway. Today, there are over 30 volunteers who are prepared to get involved. Graffiti Busters has been congratulated by the Police, Bayside Council, Beaumaris and Black Rock Traders and local residents.
We therefore concentrate our efforts on Private Property, mainly the ugly back lanes.
Private owners should remove the graffiti themselves. Council Local Rules require them to do so and Council could impose a fine for NOT doing so to a maximum of $2000. In reality, Council rarely, if ever fines private owners but all too often, private owners do NOT remove the graffiti themselves; hence the problem we have to day in our city, with ugly graffiti tags seemingly everywhere.
Graffiti Busters operates under a set of strict safety, quality and responsibility standards.
All Volunteers must sign a form to ensure their understanding and acceptance of these rules (Click here). Insurance cover (Public Liability and Personal Accident) is provided to Volunteers whist on “official busts”) via Neighbourhood Watch Victoria Inc.
How we fund Graffiti Busters – Graffiti Busters is entirely funded through support and fundraising as follows
A very satisfying community activity
Ask a Graffiti Buster and he or she will most likely say it is a very satisfying and good community experience.
A typical “Graffiti Bust” works as follows. Periodically, the Graffiti Buster Volunteers will receive a “Call to Action” A local cafe is nominated as a meeting place where the “Bust” commences with coffee and a chat.
After coffee, those who have turned up commence work on an assigned area. This lasts for about two hours after which the team (or those remaining) return for a final coffee or go home! it’s very casual but effective.
Volunteers receive training and guidance. The work is fairly straight forward but there are some “tips of the trade” that have been learnt.
Support from the Community, Traders, Police, Politicians and Authorities.
All residents (as far as we know) support our efforts. Certainly all property owners who have had graffiti removed from their property at no cost are delighted!
Bayside Council has supported us with kits and cleaning liquid. We are soon to undertake a Trial to expand Graffiti Busters with Council support. See below.
NHW Graffiti Busters Volunteers will then remove the graffiti or paint the area in the period until 30th April 2020. Council will assist NHW Graffiti Busters Volunteers by providing removal cleaning liquid and paint.
If the “OPT-IN” process and the trial overall proves successful, NHW will endeavour to form Graffiti Busters – Bayside Volunteer groups in other Bayside suburbs and will train them and provide them with leadership and guidance.
The project might then roll forward to the benefit of all residents in Bayside