A new play aimed at building youth and community resilience by engaging in conversations about drug harm makes its public debut in Whangārei today.

10ft Tall is supported by Te Puni Kōkiri and the Northland DHB and starts a road journey today with another resilience building programme for taiohi/youth during May and June.
The third play in the Northland DHB collaboration series, the 10ft Tall programme is now ready to engage in the current conversations concerning P and drug harm.

The interactive play will be performed at various locations in Northland this month and next. Its public debut is at Tikipunga High School today, beginning at 9.40am.

This upbeat story follows the confessions of rebel and risk-taker Jesse as she runs off the rails.


The play shows a community which is supportive and effective in keeping her safe.

The heroes, who support Jesse, model the resilience-building attributes,of being connected, of having a sense of purpose, and of contributing. After a rough ride Jesse finally comes to her senses and with the support of her community, she picks up the challenge to map out a bright future.

After the play, workshops are hosted by the actors and a support team to invite conversation and dialogue around drug harm in a safe and supportive environment.

The play is supported by professionals including a team from Te Ara Oranga, the collaboration between the Northland District Health Board and Police.

This resilience-building programme has a proven track record (previously named 10ft Tall and Bullet Proof and sometimes known as "The P play").

Nevandra Straker, a former Whangārei Girls' High School student, plays Jesse, while Jacob Dale, from Palmerston North, plays Terry and Lionel Wellington, from Ngunguru, plays Tamati.

The play is directed by Bryan Divers from Playworks Production.

A recent survey by police showed that Northland has the highest methamphetamine - or P - use in the country, while the region also has the highest suicide rate.


Where to go for help

• If you are worried about your or someone else's mental health, the best place to get help is your GP or local mental health provider. If you or someone else is in danger call police immediately on 111.
• To talk to someone else: Lifeline: 0800 543 354 (available 24/7); Suicide Crisis Helpline: 0508 828 865 (0508 TAUTOKO) (available 24/7); Youthline: 0800 376 633. Need to talk? Free call or text 1737 (available 24/7); Kidsline: 0800 543 754 (available 24/7); Whatsup: 0800 942 8787 (1pm to 11pm); Depression helpline: 0800 111 757 (available 24/7); Rainbow Youth: (09) 376 4155; Samaritans 0800 726 666; Rural Support Trust: 0800 787 254.