For a lot of us, moving to university is the first time we are living out on our own and, particularly when moving off-campus and into the city, this can leave you a little anxious about keeping yourself safe. So here at student life, as well as the basics of looking out for your mates, knowing how you’re getting home before you head out and staying aware, we’ve made a list of some tips and gadgets to help feel you safer while staying and studying at Lincoln.
Portable Lock – If you want a little extra peace of mind in your uni room you can get yourself a portable lock; these are essentially a metal frame that fits over the bolt hole in the door frame where the latch and lock sit and a chain latch that slots into it. Along with the lock on your door, this portable lock has no key-hole to pick or any way to spring for the outside, but is easily removed and stored away when you’re not using it, which can help with any anxieties about moving out to a new place, particularly when trying to get off to sleep.
Personal Alarm – Personal safety alarms, also sometimes called rape alarms, are one of the most easily available safety tools in the UK. They are pretty compact and often come on keyrings, so they are super easy to fit on your keys or in your bag; these alarms have a pull string which when pulled sets off the alarm, emitting a really loud high-pitched noise, designed to put off anyone making you uncomfortable and draw attention to you if you need help. These keychain alarms also usually come with a little LED torch, which is great for making your way home at night or after the streetlights are off. Lincoln SU have given out these personal alarms for free a handful of times and often have spares if you want to get your hands on one.
Safety Apps – As well as physical safety alarms, there are a whole host of apps you can download to turn your phone into a personal safety device. Apps like holly guard essentially turn your phone into a personal alarm, setting off a loud noise and flashing lights on your device, or apps like life360 or even SnapMaps through Snapchat, where you can share your location to selected groups, such as your flatmates, so they know where you are if you find yourself needing help.
Join Area Groups to Keep Updated – When it comes to keeping yourself safe knowledge really is power, so being able to keep yourself and people around you in the know about anything to worry about or keep in mind is a great way to help keep everyone in Lincoln safe. Groups like ‘Lincoln Girl Gang’ on Facebook are open to anyone in Lincoln and creates a feed of any incidents that happen in the city, where they happened etc. so you know where to keep an eye out.
Don’t rely too much on your phone – Write down important phone numbers and keep them on you, if you’ve been drinking or are stressed for loosing your phone/it running out of battery you might have trouble remembering gate codes to your flat or important phone numbers of mates or family who can help you out. Keeping a slip of paper in the back of your phone or tucked in your wallet with all the numbers you might need in an emergency, as well as perhaps some emergency cash if you need a taxi home, can help stop you from finding yourself stuck or on your own.