It began with a mission.
When we started lunchbox in early 2018, we wanted to figure out the many ways in which our team could improve the "festival attendee experience" for a festival community that deserved thesafest possible experience. At the very beginning, this meant developing highly focused products that tackled some of the festival culture's most prevalent problems - in-venue theft, hydration bottlenecks, and non-standardized security.
We had no intention of stopping there, though.
One of our earliest frustrations within the festival space, specifically looking at emergency response times, was the extremely time-inefficient way that medical staff were retrieved if case of an attendee emergency. Presently, in the event of an emergency, a bystander must either leave the patient to seek out medical help or try to carry a patient across the venue to a medical tent. Even when an emergency has been identified, medics end up wasting valuable time negotiating with crowds to let them pass. Radio calls get routed through a central dispatch, often tying up lines and impacting operational efficiency. We understand that to improve patient outcomes in a worst-case situation, you need to decrease response times.
Bold. Underline. Pause. Re-read. Burn it into your brain.
In order to improve patient outcomes, we must decrease response times across the board.
Anyone can be placed in a situation in which they are unexpectedly brought to the ground. Emergencies can arise from plenty of factors - whether from heat exhaustion, a pre-existing medical condition such as epilepsy, a potential drug overdose, or a lack of hydration.
Attendees at any live event regularly have what we call 'time-critical'' moments. What does this mean? The difference between saving a life versus losing a life comes down to a matter of seconds.
Worried? Don't be. We've developed a better way for medical teams to make sure they have your back. It's called...
As part of our commitment to improving the festival attendee experience, we’ve begun partnering with festival medical teams to launch SafePatrol, which is a highly visible “ski patrol” network of festival first responders that is designed to reduce medical response times across the board, so that those valuable seconds are returned for someone fighting for their life.
By massively increasing the visibility of on-site medical teams using our proprietary system of highly visible, rechargeable, bright panel lunchboxes, you can easily identify a member of the medical team all the way across a festival, even at night. Now, when emergency strikes, you don't need to run in a panic to a medical tent that you can't find. Just pick your head up, look for the nearest medical panel, and bring that medic to wherever they need to go.
By making personnel readily identifiable , not only does patron engagement with medical staff rise , but you flip the traditional medical operations model. Rather than tying up first responder time looking for patients, attendees become proactive and know who to grab in an emergency , making them better eyes and ears for festival safety on the ground.
“At every single event I’ve worked at, I’ve had people who are not aware who ask where medical is. And I’m like “I’m right here, I’m giving aid, watch me. Look at my shirt.” Sometimes in the moment, people have a hard time recognizing who the helpers are. But the nice thing about the panel on the pack is there’s no question. This time there was no question when we were giving aid. People back up, they listen to you, they don’t have a problem.”
- Jessica Pryor, Electric Forest Program Director
"I’ve worked in the medical tents at several festivals. Most of the bad outcomes are due to delayed treatment time. This is a huge step forward for festival medical.”
- Dr. Jay Feldman, D.O.
The good news? We're heading in the right direction.
From decreasing response times to increasing attendee engagement, it’s clear a safer festival future is possible with the SafePatrol program. But our journey to achieve better attendee health outcomes is only just beginning. As part of our commitment to improving the festival experience we’ve fully covered the cost of all SafePatrol implementations, but to expand this program we need your support, and the wider support of the community, to get the word out to organizers. Ultimately, we believe that SafePatrol, when widely deployed, can have a massive effect on how emergency aid is structured across the live event scene.
Our goal is ultimately to maximize the impact of medical teams during a live event, in the service of an attendee experience that’s given so much to us.
For this program to work at scale, we need to work to get the attention of festival organizers, festival medical teams, operations teams, and other festival stakeholders to show that there's a better way. If you know anyone in the space and can refer them to us, write us at firstname.lastname@example.org or get in touch via social media.
It takes a tribe. Or, in our case, a lunchbox fam.
Lunchbox founder, social entrepreneur, festival community builder.