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Hansard Transcript, June 19, 90-second statement - HighWater Theatre

Posted June 19, 2014


CATHY McGOWAN (Indi) (13:37):  On behalf of the Parliamentary Friends of Youth Mental Health, today I welcome HighWater Theatre from Wodonga to Canberra. HighWater is an arts based program for high-risk young people, aged between 12 and 15. These young people are out of school, involved with juvenile justice, child protection and youth welfare agencies in the Wodonga area.

Yesterday this group delivered a performance of a compelling new play Mindfields … burns too bright. The play looks at what we often fail to acknowledge—the issues surrounding youth mental health. It is a story which illustrates how: “Kids like us don’t walk in a straight line & although we try, we try so hard—we don’t always arrive at the destination posts at your designated times.”

The play is filled with music, singing, movement, high energy and humour, and it cuts deeply.

In bringing this play to Canberra, the group hopes to increase discussion on the vexed issue of youth mental health. HighWater Theatre is a joint initiative between Somebody's Daughter Theatre Company, Gateway Community Health, the department of education and training in Victoria, and the Australia Council.

As always with such things, it takes a team effort to make it happen. Congratulations to all involved—staff, young people, families and the many who donated via Chuffed.

I would particularly like to thank my colleague Clive Palmer and Minister Pyne for the attention and wonderful welcome they gave these young people.

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