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The Corporation

Posted: 27/09/18

Sexual health matters to young people

The importance of sexual health has been in the spotlight this week at West Nottinghamshire College, giving students the opportunity to get confidential advice and support.

(left to right) IT student Joseph Stain, SEXions advisor Phil Eardley and IT student Owen Shaw who tried the 'beer goggles'

The student experience team joined forces with staff from SEXions to provide an opportunity for staff to discuss the options and benefits of different contraception, and learn more about sexual health matters.

SEXions is a confidential sexual health service for young people aged 13-19 and is based in The Hub, at King’s Mill Hospital and at Newark Hospital. The team also works within the community to provide group sessions in educational settings.

SEXions personal advisors Phil Eardley and Claire Smith have been present at the three college campuses this week to help students discover more about good sexual health.

Wednesday (26 September) was World Contraception Day which is a worldwide initiative to improve awareness of contraception and to enable young people to make informed choices on their sexual health and reproduction.

At the information stand students could obtain a C-card which provides access to free condoms, learn more about the various methods of contraception and information on sexually transmitted diseases, and get advice on alcohol use and misuse.

Phil Eardley, SEXions personal advisor said: “Our team offers a confidential sexual health service and we’re present in college every week on Wednesdays and Thursdays from 12.30-2pm at the Derby Road campus. It’s a drop in service where we welcome any student.

“They can get condoms from us, take away a pregnancy test as well as chlamydia and gonorrhoea tests. The test is done at home, the individual brings them back to us and we take them back to the lab and return results to students via text – it’s a very confidential way of looking after your sexual health.

“It’s great to see more and more people approach us and we operate the drop-in service so everyone has the chance to approach us for advice.”

Seventeen-year-old Joseph Stain, who is studying the Diploma in IT Infrastructure, said: “This is a really important service to have at college as so many people don’t get educated properly on sexual health. Not everyone can speak to their parents about these matters so it’s great that young people to speak to someone they don’t know but confidentially.

“It’s good to see there’s advice on alcohol consumption. I think it’s ok as long as you drink responsibly, but lots of young people can get into trouble with excessive drinking. I turn 18 next month so it’s worthwhile advice to have.”