Te Whatu Ora and Te Aka Whai Ora are planning the next steps for their award-winning campaign to discourage young people from vaping. 

About 1000 people visited the Later Vaper Arcade in Manukau over nine days at the end of September. 

The arcade has interactive games to help young people understand the value of their breath, reflect on their wellbeing, and receive suggestions and alternatives to vaping for coping with stress.  

It is part of the Protect Your Breath campaign, a joint initiative supported by the two health agencies and put together by creative agency Curative and the Hā Collective, with the aim of discouraging young people from taking up vaping. 

It won a number of accolades at the Best Design Awards, run by the Designers Institute of New Zealand, earlier this month. 

Protect Your Breath, one of thousands of entries in the annual showcase of excellence in graphic, spatial, product, digital and motion design, took a silver in the Graphic – Design Communication category, and a bronze in the Public Good section. 

Hayden McRobbie, Te Whatu Ora Regional Director, National Public Health Service says, “We want our next generations to be living well in all aspects of their lives, including being free from smoking and vaping. 

“The award-winning campaign has brought 1000 people through the arcade and inspired many thousands of thought-provoking conversations on social media and elsewhere about how exposure to the substances found in vapour among non-smokers is harmful to lungs as well as other parts of our bodies.  

“In addition, addiction to nicotine can make quitting much more difficult.”  

“The arcade has provided a platform to bridge more conversations on youth vaping with rangatahi and their whānau in spaces our whānau are familiar with,” says Selah Hart, Maiaka Hapori Deputy Chief Executive Public and Population Health, Te Aka Whai Ora. 

“It was awesome to kōrero with so many whānau at the Later Vaper Arcade launched last month. 

“We need to continue to break down the barriers for young people to be able to take the lead on their hauora. This campaign is made by rangatahi for rangatahi – this is crucial to shifting the dial on youth vaping.” 

The team behind the arcade are now looking at how to make it even more impactful during its next city stop, which is expected to be sometime in early December.