The Ripple Effect: A series no parent or teen should miss
The Ripple Effect is a confronting, challenging, raw and emotional special multimedia series looking at how illicit drugs are devastating Australian families. Four courageous mothers, all bound by the grief of losing a child to an overdose, share their personal stories.
Jennie Ross-King is grappling with the beast that is grief.
It's been more than 10 months since she buried her only daughter, 19-year-old Alexandra, but grief cruelly tricks and teases her with games of hope on some days, then threatens to drown her with cruel reality on others.
"You convince yourself they are coming home," Ms Ross-King tells The Ripple Effect.
"It is all very surreal still. I can't explain it but I still don't believe that it has happened.
"So many people say it gets better with time but it gets worse, it gets harder to wake up and convince yourself that it didn't happen and harder to trick yourself that they are just away or they are going to come home soon.
"As time passes, you realise they are not coming home."
The 18 young Australians who didn't come home
Eighteen young Australians, all in the prime of their lives, all went to Australian music festivals to have a great time. All didn't come home.
32 cents a pill to make - how drug traffickers are profiting from our kids
Deadly party pills killing young Australians cost international drug traffickers just 32c each to make and are then sold in their thousands for as much as $30 a pop, a special investigation by The Ripple Effect has revealed.
Australia is a worldwide leader in MDMA consumption, pouring hundreds of millions of dollars into the pockets of international drug lords, who have turned The Netherlands into the global capital of party drug manufacturing and smuggling.
100kg of MDMA precursor: Deadly deal found in 15 minutes
Chinese factories are more than willing to coach buyers of precursor chemicals used to make the drug MDMA on how to smuggle them into Australia.
It took less than 15 minutes for The Ripple Effect to find comments online from three factories that would ship 100kg of PMK Glycidate, a globally popular base ingredient for ecstasy, banned by the United Nations in March.
"We can send you within 1-2 working days," one agent from a factory in Hebei, northern China, said. "We have stock … the customs is no problem."