We talked with Victorian rural youth workers about what topics you needed support with to help you talk to young people about sexual health and relationships. You said EVERYTHING.
You told us that it’s hard to know what’s ok to say and what’s not, especially when or if the young person has experienced trauma.
So that’s what this site is for. It’s not a course – it’s more of a smorgasbord so you can pick and choose topics to address your burning questions.
There are 2 types of information:
- Information for you, the worker, to inform your professional practice.
- Resources you can show young people. One way to start a conversation about sexual health is to ask young people what they think of the resources we’ve collected. Let us know if you’ve found more or better ones that young people love.
Follow the buttons below to self-guide through our set of resources.
Sex Health – From Problem to Possibility
Your introduction to the ins and outs of sexual health promotion. We want professionals who support young people to feel confident and courageous in approaching the topics of sexual health and wellness.
Sensitive and Inclusive Practice
This section provides practice tips for supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people, young people with intellectual disabilities, and LGBTQIA+ young people.
Talking Sexual Health
These frameworks help you make decisions about if you should talk with a young person about a concern or query or whether to refer to expert services. We know that you can only know so much, that's why we are here to help.
STIs and Testing
There are many STIs out there, but some are more prevalent in young people and different communities than others. Being an expert takes time, but if you know how testing works and how to support getting young people tested, you will be truly advancing health promotion.
Contraception and Abortion
Contraception and abortion are important provisions for many young people. Understanding the basics and where to direct young people for more information is more important than being an expert in this space.
Pregnancy and Maternal Health
Young people often need extra care in pregnancy and during parenting. Supporting young parents (and we mean both parents) to connect with services early in the pregnancy makes a difference.
Young people can often tell you what sexual consent means but find it hard to do in real-life. There’s a difference between knowing the laws and ‘being there’ – feeling the pressure, being undecided, reading the other person’s cues, and communicating about sex.
Communication, honesty and trust are just a few aspects that feature in healthy relationships. Being able to start conversations with young people about healthy/unhealthy relationships and relationships skills are critical in supporting positive development.
Gender, Norms, and Diversity
Understanding gender, how gender is performed, and the wide continuum of genders is essential for providing supportive care to all young people that you will work with. We want youth workers to be able to recognise and challenge biases, as well as work to support young people in their development.
Porn and Online Safety
Porn is undoubtedly one of the more contentious topics in the sexual health and education spaces. Knowing why young people watch porn and what the research says may help you support them on their journey regardless which road they choose.
Media and Social Media
Sex Positivity and Pleasure
In Victoria, we have several organisations that provide excellent resources and training in sexual and reproductive health and rights. You will see several of them featured heavily throughout, but we also encourage you to visit their websites for additional information above and beyond what we have provided throughout The Busy Youth Workers' Guide, including further training opportunities and resources.
- 1800 My Options will help you find sexual and reproductive health services throughout Victoria. Whether a person is pregnant and considering their options, looking for contraception, or in need of support. You can call, text, email.
- Sexual Health Victoria promotes reproductive and sexual health for all Victorians through clinics (including telehealth), education and advocacy. They have great information including videos on their site and provide training for youth workers.
- Victorian Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (VACCHO) have a fantastic range of locally made sexual health resources, and provide sexual health professional development.
- The Centre for Culture, Ethnicity and Health (CEH) provides information on sexually transmitted infections (STIs), and on where to go for testing through their Multicultural Health and Support Service.