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Our priority is to enable young people to make genuine, informed choices about their lives. Through our work we hope that this will contribute to a reduction in the number of teenage pregnancies and improve outcomes for parents and their children.
Working with parents
The teenage pregnancy strategy aims to provide support to parents/ carers, as many young people still find it difficult to talk to them about sex and relationships. Speakeasy facilitator courses have recently been rolled out in Bournemouth and there are now a number of practitioners who are equipped with the necessary skills to provide courses to parents in a number of different settings. For further information please contact: Lisa Cousins (Teenage Pregnancy Strategy Coordinator- 01202 456204)
Throughout all the work we undertake with young people we are aware of the importance of communicating with parents and strive to do so, with the young person’s consent.
Supporting young people to delay sex
• A quarter of girls and nearly a third of boys have sex underage. The average age for both sexes is 16
• Regret is a major issue for young people. 67% of young people who had sex aged 13 and 14 wished they had delayed this choice
(Source: National Survey of Sexual health Attitudes and Lifestyles, Johnson, Wellings et al 2002)
Delay messages are given to young people through sex and relationships education. Information is provided to enable young people to make more informed choices about their lives and to be able to develop and negotiate healthy relationships.
• Supporting young people to make more informed choices about sexual relationships, and to equip them with the necessary skills to help them to decide when they are ready
• Giving young people the skills to say ‘no’ to pressure they may experience eg. From peers, boy/ girlfriends, the media/ cultural perceptions
• Promoting equal access to good quality sex and relationships education which allows young people to grow in emotional awareness and self esteem
• Giving young people the necessary skills to develop positive friendships and inter- personal skills
• Balancing messages around delay, with accurate information and the skills to negotiate healthy relationships when the young person is ready
• Being clear that this is relevant to all young people- heterosexual, gay, lesbian, bisexual and those questioning their sexuality
• Giving the message that sex is not a treadmill- you can take time out for yourself if you want to
• AND… alongside all of this providing excellent high- quality health services and support which enable young people to access contraception and sexual health services
10 Tips to communicate with your child about relationships and sex:
• Introduce the subjects early and develop them as your child grows up
• Ask your child what they think and already know and give answers they can understand
• Talk about feelings and relationships, not just the biology
• Use everyday media such as television programmes and magazines as a way of raising the issues
• Let your child know what you think and believe
• Let your child know about the importance of considering the feelings and wishes of others in relationships
• Ask your teenager what they think about waiting to have someone they care about and who will share the responsibility of contraception and safer sex
• Find out when sex and relationships education is being offered at school and ask your child what they thought of the lesson
• Talk when you are doing everyday things together such as washing up, walking somewhere or setting the table so that it becomes part of everyday life
• Talk to other parents and carers about how they answer their children’s questions and how they feel about difficult issues
Effective Sexual Health Advice Service
The sexual health of young people matters. In order to address this there are a number of clinics across the Borough which are young –person friendly and easily accessible. For information about contraception and sexual health advice and for young people please contact The Junction on 01202 646915 or go to www.f-risky.co.uk.
Bournemouth also has a Condom Distribution scheme in place, commonly known as C-Card scheme. There are a number of distribution outlets across the Borough where young people can have access to advice, information and free condoms. All Young people in the Bournemouth area aged 13 – 21 years can access free condoms via the C-card scheme. All workers that distribute C-Cards and condoms must have been trained by the sexual health team and must complete the relevant paperwork (Fraser Guidelines) to establish competency.
For further information about this scheme contact Lisa Cousins on 01202 456204.
Young people requiring Emergency Contraception can do so within 72 hours of the episode of unprotected sex. The sooner it is taken, the more effective it is. Ideally the young person should take it within the first 24 hours to ensure maximum effectiveness. Emergency Contraception can be accessed free from a GP, although often it can be difficult to get an appointment quickly. If there is a clinic running locally on the same day then this would be the most appropriate option. Alternatively, young females under 18 years of age can access it free from the Pharmacy Scheme. For a list of pharmacies offering Emergency Contraception free to under 18’s go to www.f-risky.co.uk|. It would be advisable to make a referral to Chris Loader - Sexual Health Outreach Nurse or contact her for further information 07879471863
Prioritisation of Sex and Relationships Education
Strong and consistent delivery of sex and relationship education is a key priority for the Teenage Pregnancy Strategy. We work closely with schools and other agencies in the community to promote good practice across the Borough and to offer support in driving up the quality of SRE that all young people receive.
We know that some groups of young people can be more at risk of teenage pregnancy than others. They include young people who are involved in youth offending, young people involved in ‘risk taking’ behaviour eg. abuse of drugs and/ or alcohol, young people who are in care or have been Looked After in the past. In order to address this we are delivering targeted SRE to those young people in addition to what they receive universally.
For further information about Sex and Relationship Education in Bournemouth contact Lisa Cousins 01202 456204/Ayse Dervish 01202 456196
Working with pregnant teenagers and young parents
Offering the appropriate support to pregnant teenagers and teenage parents is integral to our efforts to reduce future teenage pregnancies, narrow health inequalities and tackle child poverty.
Children born to teenage mothers are more likely to live in deprived areas, do less well at school and disengage early from learning. All of these are risk factors for teenage pregnancy and other poor outcomes. We know from research that teenage mothers are twice as likely as daughters born to older mothers to become teenage mothers themselves.
Identifying a pregnancy as early as possible is important to ensure that young people are provided with enough time to consider their choices and seek the necessary support and advice.
A range of support for young parents is available across Bournemouth. This includes both support in groups and on an individual basis. For more information about specific services across Bournemouth please contact Tara Civil/ Jan Tiller on 01202 575906.
f-risky| - For all sexual health information and local services
Brook| - For information on sexual health for young people up to the age of 25
bpas| - The British Pregnancy Advisory Service offers advice and information on unplanned pregnancy
Over the Rainbow| - Advice, support and information for the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Bournemouth Community
NHS| - Offers advice on sex for young people
Lisa Cousins - Teenage Pregnancy Strategy Coordinator
Dana Owen - Sexual Health Youth Worker
Children’s Learning and Engagement
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