Shambala Music Festival Safety with ANKORS
Free Anonymous Drug-Testing for Festival Attendees
Having been championed for their efforts in harm reduction over the past few years, British Columbia’s Shambala Music Festival is proud to announce that they have donated the final $10,000 needed for the purchase of an FTIR Spectrometer.
This is an advanced drug testing technology. It will be used at this year’s event. This was the result of a two-year partnership with ANKORS, a not-for-profit organization that specializes in providing harm reduction services at music festivals across the world through on-site drug testing.
Testing Made Possible from Donations
First of all, this donation was in addition to the $32k raised by Shambala attendees through ticket purchase donation options and other outside funds given through the Gofundme campaign. As a result, this new technology, provided by ANKORS, is able to better educate those who choose to consume drugs.
Essentially, it is meant to empower them with accurate information about what they are ingesting. Furthermore, they assist those attendees with making more informed decisions about what is in the substance at hand. With this project, Shambala Music Festival and ANKORS continue to invest in the well-being of their guests.
ANKORS Excitement for Festival Safety
ANKORS drug checking coordinator Chloe Sage states the excitement for the new drug testing features available:
Shambhala has supported ANKORS in this fundraising effort to obtain an FTIR Spectrometer for our community and to use at Shambhala every step of the way. After two years we will finally see this instrument in action. I’m very excited to add the FTIR to our harm reduction service this year at Shambhala.
Also, assisting ANKORS and Shambala with this effort are Interior Health Medical Health Officer Dr. Silvina Mema, ASK Wellness of Kamloops, and the British Columbia Centre on Substance Use (BCCSU). Both parties have proven to be industry leaders on the subject of drug checking as a harm reduction service.
Perceived Drug vs. Known Substance
Research from the British Columbia Centre on Substance Use shows that the majority of substances from the street for recreational use did not contain what was advertised to consumers.
90% of Opioids and 6% of stimulants tested positive for Fentanyl, a deadly narcotic that poses a high risk for addiction and death. Due to this mismatch in the perceived drug against knowing any given substance’s actual ingredients, there is the risk of an adverse experience. Now, it is just as important as ever that Shambala uses the most advanced technology to keep patrons safe.
Shambala Music Festival is set to host their 21st-anniversary edition this week and will provide attendees the option of bringing their substances to the ANKORS booth for testing free of charge. At that, the organization is set to make their return to Shambala Music Festival this year a safer experience for all.