Two Chilliwack women are trying to keep themselves and other women safe with self-defence keychains.
Farin and Kimberlin Loewen are feeling increasingly paranoid because of things they’ve been hearing from friends, and wanted to do something about it.
“We’ve heard from friends who’ve been followed home after simply grabbing groceries, or almost been run off the road,” Farin said. “It’s horrifying. I don’t feel safe getting into my car at any time of the day, not just night-time anymore. I’m constantly checking the back seat before entering my vehicle.
“We decided we need to do something not only to keep ourselves safe, but every girl in this community.”
The keychains, which the sisters are selling for $30 apiece, have the potential to be a nightmare for a would-be assailant.
“When we were looking into making these keychains, we knew they needed to have two main things, a defence tool/window breaker and also a self-sounding alarm with an LED light,” Farin explained.
The defence tool, sometimes known as a window-breaker, is designed to fit between two knuckles on a clenched fist. It’s a pointy piece of business reminiscent of a drill bit, and not something you’d want jabbed into any part of you.
There was some concern that tool might be illegal in Canada, falling under the ‘concealed weapon’ category, but Farin said they consulted with police and border officers and were told it’s okay.
RCMP confirmed that with The Progress.
The alarm is self-explanatory, intended to make a lot of noise and attract attention.
“Our keychains also contain a fluffy puff ball, a chapstick and sanitizer holder and a door opening/stylus tip for using on pin pads, phones etc.” Farin added. “Those things aren’t a necessity, but we wanted to make it a little cute and fun in the midst of all this fear.”
The image Farin posted to Facebook shows the keychains in two colours, purple and black and black and grey.
Before starting down this road, Farin and Kimberlin looked online to see who else was selling self-defence keychains, and the only ones they could find were located in the United States.
They were expensive, and shipping added to the cost.
“We thought maybe we could look into getting the supplies maybe a bit cheaper from Canada and and just make them ourselves,” Farin said. “And so it started.”
Fairin said they were blown away by the response after they posted the idea on Facebook.
“We posted our idea on social media to see if anyone would be interested in purchasing one, and to our surprise we had an overflowing amount of inquiries,” she said. “We ordered enough to make 20 keychains, and it was unexpected to have over 80 people reach out to us.”
The women are donating partial proceeds to Chilliwack’s Anne Davis Transition Society, which provides shelter and support for abused women and their children.
“The idea behind making these keychains wasn’t to make money off of them,” Farin said. “It was to keep my family safe, and I wanted to share that with others. We decided to give a portion of our proceeds to Ann Davis Transition Society because we want the opportunity to give back to the community.
“Stay safe friends!”
Reach out to Farin or Kimberlin on Facebook for more info.