Launch time! And new videos begin….

We have most certainly invested in the longer days and worked our little socks off this April!

Kerry Bishop Sexual Health Nurse from Trihealth Bassetlaw and I on the stand at the WhatNext Worksop Careers Fair!

Not only have we finessed ‘The Fundamentals’ Programme of 5 hours teaching ready for launch next Tuesday (WAHOO!), but we have already filmed the next five films for a further programme of teaching, to be released before the summer is out.

Not forgetting our two crazily busy and energetic days at the ‘WhatNext’ Careers Fairs, brilliantly organised by Tim Gladman from Bassetlaw District Council. Hundreds and hundreds of children passed by our stand and walked away with bracelets, key rings, leaflets, condoms and hopefully a new inquisitiveness into important topics like safe sex or where to go to get help for concerns about STIs, pregnancy or unhealthy relationships. The lovely Kerry Bishop and Liz Everitt from Trihealth Bassetlaw rocked up to share the stand at the Worksop gig in April, with hundreds of glow-in-the-dark sperm key rings (obvs) that were an astonishingly huge success with students and trade-standers alike. (I don’t think I’m that astonished about that really).We were exhausted at the end of the day by the sheer number of students that came up to see us. Mostly for the novelty key rings, but hopefully to learn more and share worries. Meanwhile we buzzed with reward and fulfilment. So lovely when a plan comes together….

It is a huge moment for us next week when the films and lesson plans that we have spent so many hours on finally land in schools. We are so proud of the PSHE Association Quality Assurance Mark we have obtained for ALL the resources we have made to date, and simply cannot wait to hear what others think.

Please do check out the videos and consider a purchase for your school or home!

Dr Naomi Sutton and I on our second filming day in April!

A special thank you to Dr Naomi Sutton as ever for making this journey such fantastic fun. The giggles have been endless despite the piles of work involved.

Let us know what you think!

Magic Board & Burgers!

It has been a wonderful journey getting the charity registered, then looking up and out to individuals who could enrich the organisation.

Last night was a magical realisation that we have made an extremely solid start! Here with me are 4 of our magnificent board of trustees. (We missed you Helen and Kelly!!). Brandishing our charity bracelets and laying their hearts and minds open to how we improve our reach to teens in schools, and other projects to boot!

It is no small thing when professionals with full time day jobs, then give up yet more of their precious time, for free.

Thank you to our brilliant, energetic, sharp, sensible and arrestingly kind Trustees. Onwards !

And you MUST check out the amazing food and community enterprise of @makenobones. Unfathomably delicious meat free burgers that we decided were the best burgers we’d EVER tasted!!!

Filming Begins!!!!

It took some work to get us to the point of filming, but on Friday we made it to the start line!

Jordan Carroll

I don’t think I shall ever eat kefir again and I had quite forgotten how slippery a condom is, especially when wearing a pair of beer goggles! But heh, we wrapped our first five short educational videos (titles below), in the safe hands of the fabulous Jordan Carroll.

The five film titles due for release in January 2021:

Penis Pressure. Vulval Vexations. Sex Script: Consent. Period Dramas. Sexual Health Check. 

Each film will have an accompanying one hour lesson plan and student fact sheet. The films will be available to see and share for free, and the lesson plans will be available for a small one-off charge. The funds generated will serve entirely towards producing the future film content.

We are calling this set of films, ‘The Fundamentals,’ in the hope that we are able to reassure young people on key issues such as penis and vulval health and hygiene, periods, sexual health, consent and much more. Our next five films planned for February 2022, will take the students on an onward journey through more complex themes and concerns. All of these films will continue to be produced on the back of the actual questions and worries that young people report to us in our day jobs and through our information gathering boxes that are in local schools.

Naomi (Dr Sutton!) and I giggled our way through filming day changing from one T shirt to the next until our shoulders ached; Saving Lives, Populations Matters, Eve Appeal, Fempowered and of course our very own You Before Two threads.

Some editing awaits and likely a fair amount of discomfort as we wait to see what the young think of them! But the journey is already a joy and we are learning as we go.  Thank you to the fabulous hundreds of students who have given us their questions so far. We hope we can provide some answers and ‘bust some myths.’ (Dr Sutton’s phrase that I heard more than once on Friday!). YEY, let’s do this!

Epic work together!

It has been a pleasure to meet and work with Candace Thomas over the past few months from the organisation Epic.

Logo featured with kind permission from Epic.

It will be great to visit Scotland next term and deliver our sexual consent workshop as part of the newly established ‘Scottish Youth Programme’ which covers a range of topics from good mental and physical health to sexuality. This wrap-around approach is certainly one favoured across the country, but delivering it effectively is quite another matter! I was honoured to be asked to get involved.

It matters to us that the students have high quality take-home goodie bags (using sustainably sourced materials), that will help them think on and reach for relevant organisations in the future should they need them. Empower to Plan will promote and help us generate these funds. Please watch this space for when the fundraiser is launched.

On Me Heart Son!

Being one of those that, ‘only watches the England matches,’ I am probably not best placed to pass any kind of judgement. However, it is hard not to get swept up and share the sentiment that footballers cut rather a different dash in 2021.

As a child I remember the fast balls, cars, cash and ‘wags.’ All washed down with copious amounts of booze, babes and greasy press coverage.

What we see now is very, very different. Those white shirts spark a fresh joy that feels clean for all ages, and an influence that is inherently good, infectious and impressive. A goal scored on the pitch is now matched off the pitch, by the players being named seemingly one by one, on the Queen’s Honours list for services in their communities. This has become so much more than football and the ultimate pandemic antidote that we want to wash down in great big joyful gulps.

If you need any help to push all this cerebral percentage sport that we now see almost everywhere, down into the depths of that beating red organ in your chest, watch Mason Mount give his shirt to a little girl waving to get his attention after the match on Wednesday night.

If that doesn’t get you then tune into Radio 4’s ‘Profile’ on Raheem Sterling, who’s father was shot dead when he was 2 years old. Listen to how his mother brought him and his sister to London for a ‘better life,’ and his commitment to training, catching three buses every afternoon and returning at 11pm each night. Hear how badly he was treated by fans and how doggedly he came through it. It is 14 minutes of your life you won’t regret giving up.

Learning of a grown man sobbing this week as the NHS covid-app removed his ticket to the Final in one intrusive ping, I wanted to cry myself, for that is one moment that cannot be rolled over to next year like our lamented holidays.

The anguish of a loss tonight will be sharp indeed. If the unthinkable happens, I will focus on the words of Winston Churchill, for it will be a moment for only the biggest of statements.

‘Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.’

 

 

Join Us!

VOLUNTEER WORKSHOPPER:

Our predominant aim is for our workshops to be fun. As the researcher and producer of our workshops I constantly ask myself; Is this relatable? Are these facts completely accurate, up to date, relevant and reproducible in real life? It is of no use whatsoever to tell a child that they can’t have sex until they are 16 as that is illegal. What does that mean? Will they get arrested if they do it younger than that? Unlikely. (If they are of a similar age to each other and the sex is safe and consensual).

I carefully weave real life scenarios into actual law and constantly ask the students to tell me what they think, feel and understand. They must never feel afraid to tell us what they are up to. If they are in trouble they are going to need our help. If they are happy and enjoying life, they are going to need our help and support to maintain the status quo. We always have a role whether we feel employed or acknowledged in this role or not!

In order to enter schools to deliver our workshops you will need the following attributes:

  • Positive thinker (we know that feels impossible sometimes!), fear swallower (frightened – but we do it anyway is our mantra!), self-rescuer and predominantly an active listener, rather than talker. We aim to upload not download!
  • 100% reliable, trustworthy and honest with a clean DBS check (enhanced level).
  • Punctual, efficient and happy to show initiative and give your time for free (although we abide by all official volunteer policies and subscribe to Volunteer Solutions UK and will reimburse any reasonable expenses).

Please click here if you are interested in volunteering to deliver/help deliver the workshops.

 

HELLO !!!!

Thank you so much for being the first visitors to our new website!!

It has been a spectacularly busy year.

For that, I feel completely blessed. Not a single moment has been wasted on me. Stepping out into one unseasonably balmy evening after the next, following a (very) long day in the office, with colleagues of the actual human form, has made me feel tired, but lucky, when so many other team players have been forced into isolation entirely against their will.

The NHS has risen to the challenge. Just.

The vaccines have proved a previously unimaginable triumph.

But now the real work starts to fix the broken hearts and heads. This will take time and dogged positivity. No amount of NHS alone is going to fix this. It will take extra time, effort and possibly finance from everyone to bring us back from the 2020 full body shock.

Would you be interested in volunteering for You Before Two?

What is a Volunteer?

“…An important expression of citizenship and essential to democracy. It is the commitment of time and energy for the benefit of society and the community and can take many forms. It is undertaken freely and by choice, without concern for financial gain”

The Volunteering Code of Practice

Please contact us if you would like to be part of the work of You Before Two.

It’s a wrap!!

It’s a wrap!

Our workshop pilot has come to an end and what an amazing start-up journey we have had.
Thank you so much to the 308 children (137 boys 171 girls) who have partaken in our Sexual Consent workshops across two public schools, three academies and one UTC. We have had a blast! So much energy and support for our new project that I don’t actually know where to start with the thank yous. But I would like to give a very special thank you to our amazing You Before Two team for all their hard work and devotion and to Kennedy Taylor – Camm for her support and belief at the very beginning of our pilot, and her ongoing support . And to Population Matters our main start up sponsor. ( Not forgetting important funding from the fabulous @worksopcharities). We have heaps of lovely pictures, but many cannot be shared in this domain due to the understandable GDPR and school restrictions, but here are some of the 122 wonderful comments that the children and staff have given us:

‘Very well executed and very experienced.’
‘Fabulous session!’
‘An emotional, positive and brilliant session.’
‘It was very fun. I learnt a lot of new stuff.’
‘Epic!’
‘We were very loud and we liked the sweets!’

We asked ALL the children to tell us what subjects they would like us to come back with in the next academic year. The two subjects that came up most were:
Relationships: 47.8%
Mental Health: 44%

We welcome any and all donations to our entirely charitable organisation ‘You Before Two.’

New Beginnings!

To our children, please do not forget:

CHOICE CONSENT CONFIDENCE