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Residents of Estonia are prepared to volunteer for safety of the country

12. June 2014 - 19:50

Today, the study regarding volunteer activities was presented in the Ministry of the Interior. It demonstrates that 46% of the respondents are prepared to partake in the neighbourhood watch, 20% are ready to act as volunteer rescuers and 10% as assistant police officers.

“Readiness to participate in volunteer activities is currently higher than actual participation. I really hope that in the future people will more actively partake in ensuring public security by becoming assistant police officers or joining volunteer rescue or neighbourhood watch groups, since our own security and safety of our close ones start with our personal initiative,” said the Minister of the Interior Hanno Pevkur.

Most people are ready to monitor the safety of their neighbours’ homes while the neighbours are away. 23% of the respondents have already practiced that and 62% are ready to start. The respondents were prepared to participate in extinguishing fires in the nearby buildings or forest fires. Slightly less people were ready to help victims of street assault or to save a drowning person, and the respondents have had less actual experience with such situations.

The actual numbers with regard to volunteering in the field of internal security are, however, significantly smaller. 6% of the respondents have joined the neighbourhood watch, 1% have been acting as volunteer rescuers, and 0.4% as assistant police officers. “This study provides a good starting point for what to do next in order to involve as much people as possible in volunteer activities,” said Pevkur.

The study also asked how safe people feel in and around their homes. A quarter of the respondents rated their residential security with 5 out of 5; nearly half of the respondents answered with 4.Only 2% do not feel secure at all. People with higher income and residents of Western Estonia feel the most secure. The least secure people, according to the study, are residents of Eastern Estonia and elderly people. The study also showed that the sense of security at home (in addition to other factors) is affected by proximity of a police station, availability of the neighbourhood watch and volunteer rescue teams.

The study “Estonian residents on voluntary activities that support internal security: awareness and trust 2013/2014” was conducted upon the order of the Ministry of the Interior by Turu-uuringute AS in the end of last year. Detailed results of the study are available at:

Lennart Komp

Press Advisor 

Communication Department

Ministry of the Interior

Phone: 6125033; Mobile: 5626 6964

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