GREENSBORO, N.C. -- It's a night for neighbors to take a stand against crime and make their communities safer.

National Night Out, a nation-wide program to promote neighborhood unity and police-citizen partnerships takes place on Tuesday, August 1, 2017. While many people participate and support National Night Out by turning on their porch lights, there are a number of communities who take it a step further by throwing neighborhood block parties.

Each year, the Greensboro Police Department likes to send officers to each event and they remind you to register early so they can stop by and celebrate with the groups.

During each National Night Out event, neighbors connect with officers and develop ways to partner and fight crime.

"When we team up, it sends a message to criminals that neighborhoods are organized and fighting back," said Greensboro Police Officer Douglas Campbell.

You can make the night an opportunity to get to know your neighbors and police better by hosting block parties, contests, youth programs, cookouts and other fun group activities.

To register for NNO, sign up here or contact your Community Resource Officer. Communities are asked to register by July 21. Don't know your Community Resource Officer? Find yours by clicking here.

Police officers and public officials will visit as many registered events as possible, distributing crime prevention materials, and reinforcing the need for the public's support in partnering with police to make Greensboro a safer city.

Effective crime prevention, however, requires more than a one-night event. Year-long Community Watch programs have been proven effective in reducing crime and improving quality of life in neighborhoods throughout the city.

Community Watch programs enlist the active participation of citizens in partnership with the police to get something done about an immediate problem, and problem-solve on future goals. It involves:

• Citizens using common sense crime prevention practices to protect themselves and their property

• Neighbors getting to know each other and working together to prevent crime

• Citizens being trained to recognize and report suspicious activity

To learn more about National Night Out, or to start a Community Watch program in your neighborhood, call your Community Resource Officer, or the Office of Community Engagement at 336- 373-2636, or click here.