Tampa Bay homeowners learn their neighbors with "Nextdoor" - WSLS 10 NBC in Roanoke/Lynchburg Va

Tampa Bay homeowners learn their neighbors with "Nextdoor"

Posted: Updated:
WESLEY CHAPEL, FL (WFLA) -
How well do you know your neighbors? Can you name a handful of those who live close to you? According to the Pew Research Center, 28% of Americans know none of their neighbors by name.

But there's a new social networking website in the neighborhood that aims to change that. It's called Nextdoor. The idea is to bring back a sense of community to our neighborhoods.

Bruce and Cheryl Friesen live in the Lakes of Northwood subdivision in Wesley Chapel and they were looking for a way to connect with the neighbors they didn't know when they heard about Nextdoor.

They signed up and have already gotten about one-third of their neighbors, about eighty households, to do the same.

"Whenever we see a neighbor outdoors, they're fair game. We give them a little business card. We'll introduce ourselves and say we're from the neighborhood, sign up for Nextdoor. And word of mouth since then has really taken off," Bruce Friesen said.
"Everybody has an interesting story and the more people I get to know, and the more people I meet, the more amazed I am at who is out there," Cheryl Friesen said.

"Most of the folks who live here aren't from here and don't know each other," he said. "We drive into our garages and go into our own separate lives."

HERE'S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
Nextdoor is a free online platform similar to Facebook but aimed at neighborhoods. Each neighborhood creates a private Nextdoor website that is password protected and accessible only to the residents of that neighborhood.  

Every neighbor must verify their home address for security reasons.  They do that in one of three ways:
  1. A postcard with a unique code is sent to the home address
  2. A phone call to a listed number registered to the home address
  3. A credit card billing address which matches home address.
Since connecting with neighbors on Nextdoor, the Friesen's have helped organize block parties and other get-togethers. "We've put up pictures afterwards on Nextdoor so everybody can comment, Cheryl said. "And what we find is the people who haven't been there and see that there are people participating get a little more excited about showing up the next time."

Bruce Friesen is also a Sociology Professor and a firm believer in neighborly interaction.  "When we're face to face, it takes a little bit more work and there's a little more risk involved but if we're able to manage that I think the connection we feel as human beings is irreplaceable."
  • 8 On Your SideMore>>

  • Are background checks enough for Florida teachers?

    Are background checks enough for Florida teachers?

    Friday, April 18 2014 7:41 PM EDT2014-04-18 23:41:35 GMT

    In an effort to weed out potential perverts, Florida law requires fingerprinting and criminal background checks before school districts hire employees that will have any contact with children.

    In an effort to weed out potential perverts, Florida law requires fingerprinting and criminal background checks before school districts hire employees that will have any contact with children.


  • Pasco mix-up sends registration notices to wrong drivers

    Pasco mix-up sends registration notices to wrong drivers

    Friday, April 18 2014 6:02 PM EDT2014-04-18 22:02:51 GMT
    The vehicle registration information of hundreds of drivers in Pasco County were sent to the wrong person in a mix-up that led to the firing of a contractor.
    The vehicle registration information of hundreds of drivers in Pasco County were sent to the wrong person in a mix-up that led to the firing of a contractor.
  • Flushable wipes, not so flushable says Tampa's wastewater officials

    Flushable wipes, not so flushable says Tampa's wastewater officials

    Friday, April 18 2014 3:52 PM EDT2014-04-18 19:52:20 GMT
    Personal wipes, baby wipes, face wipes, flushable wipes. They are all designed to help us deal with delicate issues. But the wipes themselves are actually pretty sturdy and increasingly local water systems are finding they are creating costly problems.
    Personal wipes, baby wipes, face wipes, flushable wipes. They are all designed to help us deal with delicate issues. But the wipes themselves are actually pretty sturdy and increasingly local water systems are finding they are creating costly problems.
  • NewsMore>>

  • Two killed, two injured in Tampa park shooting

    Two killed, two injured in Tampa park shooting

    Monday, April 21 2014 12:45 AM EDT2014-04-21 04:45:46 GMT
    Nico CrawfordNico Crawford

    Two people were killed and two injured in a shooting at Al Barnes Park on 32nd Street in east Tampa on Sunday. Zedmon Culpepper, 17, and Nico Charles Crawford, 22, died at the scene, Tampa police said. The two injured victims, whose names were not released, were in critical condition at Tampa General Hospital late Sunday.

    Two people were killed and two injured in a shooting at Al Barnes Park on 32nd Street in east Tampa on Sunday. Zedmon Culpepper, 17, and Nico Charles Crawford, 22, died at the scene, Tampa police said. The two injured victims, whose names were not released, were in critical condition at Tampa General Hospital late Sunday.

  • Clearwater man arrested for fatally shooting girlfriend

    Clearwater man arrested for fatally shooting girlfriend

    Monday, April 21 2014 12:25 AM EDT2014-04-21 04:25:57 GMT
    Police say the shooting occurred at this home at approximately 1 a.m. Sunday.Police say the shooting occurred at this home at approximately 1 a.m. Sunday.
    A Clearwater man has been charged with second-degree murder in the early morning shooting death of his girlfriend. Alexander Richardson, 24, of 2368 Hillcreek Circle E., was booked Sunday afternoon in the Pinellas County Jail in connection with the death of Josephine Nicole Austria, 51.
    From their Facebook pages, Alexander Richardson, 24, and Josephine Nicole Austria, 51, appeared to be madly in love. But something went wrong early Sunday morning, leaving Austria dead and Richardson charged with her murder.



  • Grim work for families as more bodies discovered

    Grim work for families as more bodies discovered

    Monday, April 21 2014 12:23 AM EDT2014-04-21 04:23:15 GMT
    The confirmed death toll from South Korea's ferry disaster rose past 50 on Sunday as divers finally found a way inside the sunken vessel, quickly discovering more than a dozen bodies in what almost certainly is...
    There are no names listed as relatives huddle around white signboards to identify bodies from a sunken ferry - just the slimmest of clues about mostly young lives now lost. Many favored hoodies and track pants. One girl...
  • Henry County Suspicious Activity

    Henry County Suspicious Activity

    Saturday, April 19 2014 10:07 PM EDT2014-04-20 02:07:16 GMT
    Press Release from the Henry County Sheriff's OfficeThe Henry County Sheriff’s Office received a call on April 18, 2014 regarding suspicious activity. Three white males driving a white pickup truck were seen in the area of Glen Court in the Ridgeway area of Henry County. The individuals walked to the back of a residence but a neighbor yelled at them and they left. Entry into the home was not gained. On April 19, 2014, three white males were seen on Andra Drive, also in Ridgeway. A male subjec...
    Press Release from the Henry County Sheriff's OfficeThe Henry County Sheriff’s Office received a call on April 18, 2014 regarding suspicious activity. Three white males driving a white pickup truck were seen in the area of Glen Court in the Ridgeway area of Henry County. The individuals walked to the back of a residence but a neighbor yelled at them and they left. Entry into the home was not gained. On April 19, 2014, three white males were seen on Andra Drive, also in Ridgeway. A male subjec...
  • 3 Blacksburg companies raise major capital

    3 Blacksburg companies raise major capital

    Thursday, April 17 2014 2:29 PM EDT2014-04-17 18:29:23 GMT
    Three Blacksburg companies have raised major capital recently.
    Three Blacksburg companies have raised major capital recently.
  • Bedford Co. Sheriff's Office investigates burglary at country club

    Bedford Co. Sheriff's Office investigates burglary at country club

    Wednesday, April 16 2014 12:16 PM EDT2014-04-16 16:16:02 GMT
    Investigators with the Bedford County Sheriff's Office are investigating a burglary of the Boonsboro Country Club.
    Investigators with the Bedford County Sheriff's Office are investigating a burglary of the Boonsboro Country Club.
Powered by WorldNow

WSLS 10, P.O. Box 10
Roanoke, VA 24022-0010

Telephone: 540.981.9110
Fax: 540.343.3157
Email: news@wsls.com

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.