Young people heading for this year’s Boardmasters surf and music festival can get hold of a ‘survival pack’ to help them stay safe at the event, being held in Newquay and Watergate Bay from August 6 to 10 .
The packs will be handed out to 16 to 25 year olds by staff from Cornwall's Health Promotion Service, in partnership with drug and alcohol charity Addaction, and Cornwall Council’s Early Help Youth Team. The team aims to reach around 3,500 young people, and will have stalls at both Fistral Beach in Newquay and the Watergate Bay campsite.
Each 'festival survival pack' contains brief advice aimed at reducing harm among young people – including alcohol, drugs, sexual health – ponchos to help keep dry, 'spikeys' to prevent drink spiking, water for rehydration, as well as condoms. There is also the chance to win an iPod Touch, by following @safer_newquay on Twitter, and filling out an online questionnaire.
Matt Walker, from the alcohol health promotion service, said: "This year promises to be bigger and better than ever. We want to make sure people have fun and help them stay safe and well while they are here. We are extremely grateful to the organisers of Boardmasters (Vision 9), for providing pitch space and marquees free of charge."
Boardmasters Festival organisers added: ‘Boardmasters is all about having fun with the people you love and being part of a truly spectacular week filled with music, arts and the beachside lifestyle. However, safety must remain paramount in all that you do and being unified in this effort ensures that the ultimate festival experience is fulfilled.
"Please take care of yourselves and your friends, new and old. Familiarise yourself with the location of our welfare facilities and rest assured that you will never be far from one of our event stewards who will be able to assist you, should the need arise. We hope you have the time of your life – following these simple steps will guarantee that you do.’
Before any night out, the team has the following advice:
• Make sure your phone is charged and has credit.
• Eat something before you go out.
• Take condoms out with you.
• Drink water before, during and after a night out, to stay hydrated.
• Plan how you’re getting home in the evening, and save enough money for bus or taxi.
During your night out:
• Never accept drinks from someone you don’t know, and don’t go back to a drink you’ve left unattended. Use a ‘spikey’.
• Do not mix alcohol with other drugs, legal or illegal. It is impossible to know the effects.
• Drink water or a soft drink between alcoholic drinks, to stay hydrated.
• Try and eat something if drinking over a period of time.
• Do not walk home on country roads or unlit streets, and do not use coast paths or cliff-tops as short cuts.
• Stay with your mates, don’t wander off.
• Look after your mates, don’t let them wander off or leave them behind.
• Be aware that if someone is drunk, they lack the capacity to consent to sex.
• Don’t go swimming in the sea if you’ve been drinking alcohol. Especially don’t be tempted to try tombstoning (jumping from a height into water), as there is a high risk of injury due to hidden rocks below the water, cold water and strong currents.
• If you’re barbequing, don’t be tempted to use flammable liquids to help start a barbeque, and dispose of ashes safely. Make sure they’re completely cold, or put into a metal bin. And don’t drink too much alcohol if you’re in charge of the barbeque.
• Be aware of the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning from using barbeques in confined spaces. The Fire Service advises to never take a lit or smouldering barbeque into your tent, because of bad weather, or for warmth overnight, to avoid this silent killer.
After your night out:
• Drink some water before you go to sleep.
• The next day eat healthy foods rich in Vitamin C, like fruit and vegetables, to help recovery.
• After Boardmasters, try and take the whole week off alcohol to let your body recover.