Tamara, how do these testing parties work?
Lead Safe Mama testing parties are a collaborative advocacy initiative with the participants in the parties. Folks who participate in these parties pitch in together to help cover the costs of the parties [costs can include renting an XRF instrument, bringing Tamara Rubin in from out of town (she lives in Portland, Oregon), ground transportation and other related costs to come to your home (or your friend’s) to test your consumer goods and/or personal heirlooms and examine their elemental composition for the presence of common metallic toxicants (including Lead, Mercury, Cadmium, Arsenic, and more].
Testing parties generally last three hours and a “sweet spot” is to have 6 participants (the host + 5 guests) each chip in $125 to cover the $750 cost. All participants usually stay for the entire duration of the party [so they can not only get their own stuff tested, but they can learn from the testing of things that other participants bring].
For a $125 contribution the participant is encouraged to bring 20 to 30 things to have tested in their allocated half-hour. We will do our best to test as many of those things in the time available, usually at least 20 and sometimes more per half-hour. This is “speed testing” in a way, a fast screening (usually 20 seconds to one minute per item) with a pass/fail and approximate compositional values (in parts per million) given for toxicants including Lead, Cadmium, Mercury, Arsenic and Antimony. To learn more about Testing Parties (including how the test results sometimes may differ from results published here on the blog, click here.)
Sometimes one or more participants might want to test more things than the others, and they may choose to cover an hour of the cost of the event, by chipping in $250. We have have also led a few events where as many as 10 or more participants got together and managed to coordinate a BIG party, dividing the cost among all in attendance – and thereby reduced the cost to just $50-$60 per participant [be forewarned: in general, the more people involved the trickier it is to coordinate an event].
You have been directed to this post because you already (hopefully) had any questions you may have had answered, and have chosen to participate in a testing party. [If you have any remaining (or new) questions, please ask them in the group thread on Facebook for your party (or check out the main testing party link here.)
Rate for testing parties in most locations
- Click here to pay $750 to cover the full cost of a 3-hour testing party.*
- Click here to pay $250 to cover one hour of a 3-hour testing party.
- Click here to pay $125 to cover 30 minutes of a 3-hour testing party.
*Most often, guests prefer to pay for their participation directly, however sometimes it is easier for the host to pay the full amount for the party and be reimbursed by their guests; if there are going to be more than 6 guests, however, we request that the host pay the full amount and handle collecting reimbursement from the guests. For 6 guests or fewer, each guest can make their contribution directly using the links above.
Usually, the host of the party pays for one hour first – to reserve the date and time (they can later have a friend reimburse them for part of that if they want to split their hour with a friend.) Full payment for the party (from all participants) must be received at least two weeks in advance of the party, as we need to make travel arrangements for Tamara to come to you. The party is only considered fully-confirmed once all participants have paid.
Thank you for reading and thank you for participating in this work in such an engaged way!
From alll of us in the #LeadSafeMama team!
All payments for the party must be paid in full at least two weeks prior to the date of the party. If payment in full for the party has not been received at least two weeks prior, all confirmed participants will be contacted and offered the opportunity to increase their contribution to help meet the minimum for the party. If the minimum is still not reached, all contributions will be refunded in full, and the party will be cancelled. Note: refunds may take 3-4 weeks to process, and will be issued through the method they were received.