Right to Try Psilocybin Advocacy Fund
Medical research has demonstrated clear benefits of psilocybin to relieve anxiety and depression in dying patients, yet psilocybin is not legally available. Right to Try (RTT) laws allow terminally ill patients access to drugs still in investigational stages because such patients do not have the luxury of time to await the slow process of new drug approval. Psilocybin meets the requirements set by the RTT laws: it has completed an FDA-approved Phase I clinical trial, it is not yet approved or licensed for use, and it remains under investigation in clinical trials.
On behalf of terminally ill patients suffering anxiety and depression, we announce an advocacy effort to open access to psilocybin for terminally ill patients under shelter of RTT: Well known patient rights advocate Kathryn Tucker, of Emerge Law Group, represents a Seattle oncology clinic that provides cutting edge integrative medical care, research, and education in oncology, along with one of the clinic’s palliative care physicians and a number of cancer patients. The physician is seeking approval from DEA for access to psilocybin for therapeutic use with his cancer patients. DEA has continued to deny access. The legal team leading the effort to forge a path to access pursuant to RTT laws will continue to press the DEA to issue a waiver allowing access, and/or to reschedule psilocybin from Schedule I to Schedule II of the Controlled Substances Act. Other strategies to ensure access are also being explored.
Hear updates about Right To Try and the battle for psilocybin access from lead attorney, Kathryn Tucker, in this April 2022 interview with Psychedelics Today or follow the Kathryn Tucker article archive here.
Other media articles of interest include: early Right To Try effort in a 2020 Seattle Times article; a 2022 Scientific American article on patient advocacy in this effort; this final episode in a three part series produced by a cancer advocacy organization on psilocybin therapy
The Nowak Society, a Colorado 501(c)(3) nonprofit public benefit corporation, is managing the advocacy fund for this effort. All donations are tax-deductible. For questions about the fund or for larger donations via wire transfer or ACH transfer, contact us via email here.
To learn more about Right To Try Psilocybin Advocacy efforts, please explore these links:
Chacruna.net: “Can the Psychedelic Movement Learn from the Movement for End of Life Liberty?” By Kathryn L. Tucker, JD
Lucid.news: Terminally Ill Patients Fight for Access to Psilocybin Under Federal “Right to Try” Act
Documentary: "Who Owns Healing" © 2019
Our team has been collecting stories and interviews from people in our community, and the major question we've come to ask is, Who Owns Healing? This important work is guided by our founding core values, and engages a critical look at medicines, drugs, professional guilds and industry interests, and the extraordinary power of healing that humans experience. If you would like to know more, or to share your story, contact Nathan@nowaksociety.org
Consciousness-raising education and peer support
In collaboration with Colorado State University School of Social Work and the Wholeness Center, we have developed a unique curriculum for young adults aimed to shift conversation away from an exclusively medical understanding of mental and emotional distress. No diagnosing, no pill pushing, and no false myths of chemically imbalanced brains here. Our curriculum facilitates honest conversations about mind, self-hood, and the use of mind-altering drugs (prescribed or illicit), and encourages young adults to form support networks with peers and community. This project is funded by the Foundation for Excellence in Mental Health Care.
Developed in 2018, the "Consciousness-raising Curriculum for Re-telling the Story of Ourselves" is FREELY available for download and personal use. You have advance permission to print, copy, share, link, and distribute as many copies as you like, as long as you include source attribution.
Printed workbooks (78 pages) are available for order here for $23.99.
The interactive, self-guided format of this workbook is great for individual exploration or to facilitate groups. If you are part of an organization or school and would like our team to facilitate this curriculum with your group of adolescents or young adults, we offer this through two options: weekly curriculum sessions alternating with peer support over a period of months, or a two-day intensive. Contact us for more information on curriculum and/or peer support facilitation.
Building a strong, supportive Colorado community of psychedelic professionals, innovators, activists, explorers, and interested others is core to our non-profit mission. We hold formal and informal events and gatherings throughout the year (read about one of them here!) to share, learn, connect, and network with like-minded others. Perhaps you want to invite more celebration and fun into your life? Join us for a "night out with the Nowak Society" to dance and let loose, or come to a relaxed potluck gathering at a neighborhood park. Professionals, leaders, and activists might want to connect at one of our upcoming Psychedelic Professionals Meetup Groups in Denver, Boulder, or Fort Collins. Our Women in Psychedelics group provides space for women's voices to come through and to develop women's leadership in this area. Let's keep Colorado on the leading edge of psychedelic medicine and the future of psychiatry/mental health! Connecting in community is a powerful catalyst for individual and collective transformation.
Community Education and Training
We continue to offer education, training, and support to professional and community groups seeking to gain skills in de-escalating potential crisis situations, basic attendance for "being with" persons in distress, basics of psychopharmacology, and other topics related to cultivating right relationship with substances. See this Rooster Magazine article about our training with Bus To Show drivers. In addition to formal half-day to multi-day trainings, we also organize informal educational and support groups in the community on topics such as intention setting and integration of medicine experiences, refining our relationships with substances, recovering from the disempowering aspects of conventional helping and healing systems, and research and practice related to medicine work. If you have an event or group that you'd like us to help facilitate, please contact us!
The Nowak Society's network of advocates, doctors, therapists, and policy makers are also presently exploring the use of Colorado's Right to Try Act to provide certain psychoactive medicines, like psilocybin, LSD, or MDMA, to people for end of life care or who are struggling with serious conditions, such as opiate addiction or withdrawal. We are currently hosting a series of free community information sessions with the aim of stimulating community dialogue around this work and building a network of allies to support its advancement. You can access slides from a recent info session here. Or read about our work in a Rooster Magazine article here.
Other Ongoing Initiatives
Education and Community-building
Psychedelic Professionals Meetup gatherings across Northern Colorado
Women’s Leadership in Psychedelics
Special community events, social gatherings, and speakers’ series
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Public service announcements on psychedelics
Public events hosting and collaboration
Consulting on curriculum development, reform initiatives, and public and professional messaging around psychedelics
Shifting paradigms and practices around peer support and medical systems’ responses to psychological distress
Tailored trainings for community groups or professionals - Contact us!
Our charitable programming provides other non-profits or grassroots teams the opportunity to build or expand their programs