No matter what neighborhood you live in, Piedmont, Montclair, Rockridge, Glenview, Elmwood, Oakland Hills, Berkeley Hills, small, big, good or bad, it’s always nice to feel secure in your surroundings. One way to achieve this is to keep an eye on things for your neighbors and to know that your neighbors are keeping an eye on things for you Establishing a Neighborhood Watch program is a great first step. While my experience is with the city of Oakland, every local municipality offers police department assistance to establish a Neighborhood Watch.
The Oakland Police Department (OPD) program requires 2 meetings attended by a the police department representative and at least 8 neighborhood residents. Press here to view the City of Oakland Crime Prevention & Neighborhood Watch webpage http://www.oaklandpolice.com/crimprev/homalrt.html 
A great way to keep everyone in contact with one another is to create an email group list. While there are many choices, I used Google groups for my Upper Rockridge Neighborhood Watch email list. You can take a look and establish your own email list at http://www.google.com/groups . Once you establish an email group it becomes very easy for all residents to communicate and keep informed.
After you have the two meetings, the city will install signage in the neighborhood indicating that there is a Neighborhood Watch in affect. The signs combined with aware and communicating residents will go a long way in keeping or creating a comfortable secure neighborhood environment.