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Pacific People Kick the Habit for Live Show

Pacific People Kick the Habit for Live Show

The journey of 10 Pacific people trying to kick the habit of smoking will be told in a live theatre performance called Smoke in Mirrors at the Mangere Arts Centre in South Auckland on World Smokefree Day, Saturday 31st of May.

The pilot project was funded by the Ministry of Health to look at new ways of helping Pacific people to quit smoking.

The story is based on a group of Pacific Island men and women in Auckland who took up the challenge to become smokefree as part of the Kick Butt Project.

Their stories are being told in the “traditional methods” of Pacific story telling including comedy, dance, drama and song especially written for this show.

Samoan comedian Tofiga Fepuleai has created a new character “Tevita” to be the virtual narrator of the show.

Programme Manager for Tala Pasifika Edward Cowley says “we always need to be looking for new ways to support and connect with our Pacific young people and expectant mothers to help them to quit smoking.”

The participants shared their highs, lows and triumphs through the use of various social network media such as blogs, video logs and Facebook.

The group was supported through their journey with weekly quit smoking support sessions, nutritional advice as well as intense personal training gym workouts as part of the project.

Kick Butt Project leader Yvonne Timaloa says: "It’s been great to be involved with a pilot project that was holistic in its approach. It was challenging at times but also very rewarding and inspiring to hear and see the positive stories that have been told.”

The aim of Smoke in Mirrors is not only to highlight the group’s journey over the past seven months but to also encourage people who smoke to think about quitting and for others to remain smokefree.

Smoking amongst Pacific people in Aotearoa remains high. It is hoped high impact intervention programmes like Kick Butt will lower the numbers smoking in Pacific communities.

Edward Cowley says “If we want Pacific children to grow up in Smokefree homes and communities everybody must take every opportunity help spread the Smokefree word”

Visit the Kickbutt project on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kickbuttproject

About Tala Pasifika:
Tala Pasifika - the National Pacific Tobacco Control Service was launched in November 2009 to provide Pacific peoples with a mechanism to provide input and advice into policy development processes and to enhance Pacific leadership on tobacco issues.

ENDS

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