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!

Mental Health in Bassetlaw: Our poster and key rings are now available!

Within the North Nottinghamshire area there is a wide range of help available for anyone who needs support. However, it is not always easy to know who is out there and how to find them, especially when it comes to children and young people.

You Before Two and the Bassetlaw Place Based Partnership (BPBP) have teamed up to design and produce posters and key rings as a quick and easy way to locate different organisations, locally and nationally that can be accessed for support. The money for this project was secured through a successful grant application to the Bassetlaw CCG Small Grants Scheme to ‘Support Men’s Mental Health- Suicide Prevention.’ (NB: Our posters are for all ages and genders).

Asking for help can be one of the hardest steps, especially as a young person, so we have put together this poster that can be downloaded and printed off and also links to the QR code on key rings that are being given out for free in local secondary schools.

You may need support on sexual health, mental health, eating disorders, bereavement, suicide, self-harming, homelessness or just need someone to talk to.

Everything is covered here! However, if you still do not know where to start, please contact your local GP or speak to a trusted adult.

If there are any more contacts that you would like to be added to this contacts poster in the next issue, please contact us at info@youbeforetwo.co.uk.

https://www.youbeforetwo.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2022/01/18565-You-Before-Two-Mental-Health-Bassetlaw-Poster-Revised-Version.pdf

That together thing

Hello 2022. Hello you.

Still remote. Mute? Frozen? Oh no, we are just so skilled now with that coordinated action of camera and microphone, like some kind of new breed of zoomie wizards. I’m 14 days in and no talk whatsoever of ‘seeing me but not hearing me’ or vice versa. Dare I say it, we are pros at this and have decided that two years of a new ‘thing’ automatically entrenches it into our every ‘thing.’

Shall I tell you what I’ve learnt? Go on, humour me? Yep, that together thing. All warm and squidgy and dare I say a tad earnest. But my oh my, going it alone, in virtually anything nowadays, is pretty horrifying. Grab yourself an emotionally intelligent friend, family member or colleague and life starts to creak itself out of almost any trauma. After all, how good do we know we really are without asking someone? The chances are we aren’t going to give an accurate description of ourselves, to ourselves. But someone else? Someone else can see us, hear us, help us and you never know….join us?

Having recently read the utterly captivating book ‘The Choice,’ by Edith Eger, where another soul, or belief in another soul, can salvage hope when all of life appears hopeless, I am reminded of the human spirit. A reminder of how humans need other humans even when we
don’t believe that to be true. Edith talks about ‘never criticising’ others. ‘Ever.’ Now there’s a thing. To really think about that, every time we speak. Try it. Something extraordinary happens. We are led onto a road where the only paths are friendly. Well what a thing. Delivering bad news, but never actually being bad. This is where humans learn to like each other despite disagreeing. Mmm, novel. I LIKE!

Nothing impresses me more than ambitious young people. Last night I had the privilege of meeting some of the members of our local youth council. An erudite teen chairing her way through an online meeting of mixed ages and sexes, like a knife through butter. We have never owed the stage to young people more than we do now. Time for adults to step out of the way and for the teen-massive to get back to what they do best, being together with their mates, as much as humanly possible. Something we need to aspire to ourselves in adulthood, even if it now feels a bit wrong, or a bit wierd.

As I said, together is better.

 

 

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!

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.’