A New Bedford cop is looking for backup as he begins an initiative to assist the city's elderly and disabled.

Lt. Paul Demers is asking residents to let him know about any elderly or disabled neighbors who may need assistance.

Demers tells WBSM Bews once he learns about these people he will go and speak with them to determine what help they may need and what resources may be available.

"Alot of times the services are available to residents and the individual just isn't aware of them," said Demers "in the event there's no services available, I'll reach out to members of the department and the community and see if we can set up some sort of volunteer network to help these citizens."

Demers these services can often be routine tasks such as putting out the trash or mowing the lawn.

He says those assisting with these tasks can be both his fellow officers as well as the community at large.

"Neighbors of these individuals, people in the city who just want to help, maybe people from surrounding towns that want to help," said Demers "once I determine a certain amount of specific need, I'll start reaching out to my networks and see if we can take care of that."

While the primary purpose of the initiative is to provide assistance to those in need, Demers says he hopes the program will also create a greater feeling of community, in a city that he says has become a more disconnected one than the city he grew up in.

"Everybody knew everybody and they knew what everyone's needs and problems were, today you just don't have that," said Demers "there's a bit of a disconnect as it relates to the neighborhood, so by doing this I hope that will be a good byproduct to this."

To learn more about this initiative contact Demers at 508-991-6360 or through e-mail at paul.demers@newbedfordpd.com.