Skip to main content

Research Repository

Advanced Search

Implementing the Rock Challenge: Young people's perspectives on a drug-prevention and performing-arts programme

Salmon, Debra; Orme, Judy; Kimberlee, Richard; Jones, Matthew; Murphy, Simon


Debra Salmon

Judy Orme
Professor/Ins Director ISHE

Simon Murphy


This paper presents the qualitative process findings from an evaluation of a school-based performing arts programme, “Rock Challenge”. Rock Challenge aims to promote healthy life styles “by building resilience amongst young people involved”. The research aimed to capture the experiences and perceptions of young people's involvement in the programme, particularly in relation to the concept of the “drug-free high”, support offered throughout the programme and participants” response to Rock Challenge as a drug-prevention initiative. Findings from the study suggest young people felt very positive about their involvement and, in particular, valued the skills and experiences associated with organising a performance, team-working, developing confidence, friendship, fun and excitement. The excitement felt during dance rehearsals and the live performance was associated with the concept of a “drug-free high”, feeling good in the absence of drugs and alcohol, and was seen as a key benefit of the programme. While support from teachers and families was perceived as high, difficulties were identified in the recruitment of males and students vulnerable to substance misuse and recommendations are made for improvement. The health promotion opportunities for school nurses and other public health practitioners and personal, social and health education co-ordinators are highlighted. © 2001, Sage Publications. All rights reserved.


Salmon, D., Orme, J., Kimberlee, R., Jones, M., & Murphy, S. (2005). Implementing the Rock Challenge: Young people's perspectives on a drug-prevention and performing-arts programme. Journal of Research in Nursing, 10(3), 339-353.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Jan 1, 2005
Journal Journal of Research in Nursing
Print ISSN 1744-9871
Publisher SAGE Publications
Peer Reviewed Not Peer Reviewed
Volume 10
Issue 3
Pages 339-353
Keywords young people, evaluation , performing arts programme, drug use, substance use, health education, health promotion practice, school settings
Public URL
Publisher URL
Additional Information Additional Information : Journal of Research in Nursing was chosen for this paper because of the opportunities identified by the evaluation for school nurses and other health practitioners to become involved in health education. Orme was overall project manager and contributed 45% of the work on this paper. This contribution has been nationally recognised (see Health Development Agency 2003; National Children's Bureau 2006).