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Reading Goes "Up Our Street"

Release Date 04 October 2007

Posted on behalf of Reading University Students' Union

Local organisations in Reading have produced a guide to help students attending University understand the key essentials on becoming a tenant, student and part of the larger community. The guide, which is released to students this week is called "Up Our Street".

Up Our Street is an initiative started by the University of Reading and Reading University Students' Union (RUSU). Both organisations wanted to act upon the feedback, comments and recommendations that local residents have been making to the University on student behaviour. Julia Horne, Vice President of Democracy and Campaigns for RUSU said: "This is not just our guide, it is the community's guide to ensuring students don't have a negative impact to their surrounding area".

The guide details information that students may not be aware of when moving into a new property or room for the first time. "Students don't tend to think about rubbish collections and when to lock windows and doors", Julia Horne added, "Mainly because they have always relied upon a parental figure to take care of things.

"The guide we have produced is quick, simple and fun. It tells students exactly what they need to know and helps guide them with support from the local authorities".

The main focus for the guide will target 2nd and 3rd year students who have moved out of halls of residence and into a private property. Information includes:

• Environment - details on street care and ways to encourage green thinking

• Safety at home - tips and tricks on what needs to be done at home to help prevent theft

• Safety out and about - advice on how to stay safe whilst out in the town centre

• Getting around - details of the transport systems in and around Reading

• Neighbour care - guidelines on how to be a considerate neighbour

Contact details and ideas for each category are also included in the guide.

Cllr Tony Page, Lead Member for Community Action and Regeneration, said: "I very much welcome this publication which should reduce the risk of students becoming victims of crime, with bicycles and laptops being easy targets. It is also important that students are reminded of the need to behave as responsible citizens, and that anti-social and thoughtless behaviour by a minority can seriously tarnish the image of the University amongst local residents."

As part of a community effort local residents, sabbatical officers and University staff will be distributing the guide by hand, to each student residence. Ann Westgarth, Community Relations Manager at the University of Reading, said: "Up Our Street is a community initiative. It has brought vital organisations together to share information and compile this compact guide for students.

"Student safety and welfare are always at the top of our agenda, alongside the impact students have on the community and beyond. We hope the guide will inform, highlight and encourage students to contribute to their community and behave responsibly".

Up Our Street is yet another initiative the University and RUSU are launching with local companies and authorities, with the wider community in mind. The Student Safety Group and SSHH (Silent Students Happy Homes) are more examples of initiatives aimed at the welfare of students and the local community.

ENDS

Note for Editors

1. SSHH (Silent Students Happy Homes) is a campaign launched by Reading University Students' Union (RUSU). The campaign is to raise awareness of student behaviour, personal safety and sustainability within the wider community.

2. The Student Safety group active members include: The University of Reading and their Student Union (RUSU), all of the towns' bars and clubs under Studentwatch, Thames Valley Police, Redlands & University Neighbourhood Action Group (NAG) and Reading Borough Council.



Media Contact

Julie Caulfield

Communications Manager

Reading University Students' Union

Whiteknights, Reading, RG6 6AZ

0118 378 4155

j.caulfield@reading.ac.uk

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