Join the ‘Let’s Talk About Sex!’ focus group!

In 2018 we will see our new project ‘Let’s Talk About Sex!’ start, with the generous support of the European Youth Foundation of the Council of Europe. The project will look at developing a comprehensive alternative sex education manual, aimed at children and young people, which is inclusive with the whole spectrum of genders and sexualities and also with people with disabilities, as well as promoting body positivity and bodily diversity.

We are looking for IFM-SEI members from Council of Europe member states to join the focus group for the project. The focus group will lead and steer the project during the year 2018 including developing a detailed work plan and creating educational resources for members. Please note that this is a long-term commitment, whereby focus group members will be expected to attend all three activities in the project for the full duration.

The focus group will consist of eight people comprised of IFM-SEI volunteers and secretariat members. The focus group first will meet face-to-face on 7-11 February 2018 in Stockholm, Sweden, for training and to prepare the project. As part of this, they will plan and develop the two week-long parallel sex education seminars taking place in May 2018 (date TBC).  The focus group members will then join participants from the parallel seminars at the international camp, Participation Island, in Finland in July 2018 to trial and develop content for the resource.

Overview of commitments and key dates

Focus group meeting (7-11 February 2018 – Stockholm, Sweden) – this meeting will prepare the next phases with emphasis on the two parallel seminars. The focus group will receive expert training, plan the whole work plan in detail, share their expertise on the theme, prepare the general overview of the publication, plan the seminars and prepare the trials of the activities. There will be a participation fee of 45€ (western and central Europe) or 30€ (eastern Europe) per person; all other costs are covered by the project.

Sex Education seminars (May 2018, TBC) – As part of the project, there will be two week-long, parallel seminars in May 2018 (date TBC). One is aimed at less experienced young people or youth leaders that are relatively new to the topic, and the other at young people or youth leaders already experienced in the topic of gender, sexuality and/or sex education. The focus group members will join the training team for one of the seminars and all costs for them will expensed by the project.

Participation Island (25 July-1 August – Hanko, Finland) – over five days (26-30 July 2018), the focus group will join eight participants from the seminars to trial activities and guidance material for the manual with children and young people across the globe at Participation Island. Participation Island is an international camp hosted by Nuoret Kotkat in Hanko, Finland. Focus group members will be entitled to a reduced camp fee of 150€ for the whole camp and will have their travel subsidised.

Development of comprehensive alternative sex education manual – as an outcome of the seminars and Participation Island, the focus group members will develop the manual for progressive sex education with children and young people, in the style of a ‘zine’. The manual will be launched and published in December 2018.

Who can apply?

Applicants for the focus group must be able to demonstrate the following:

  • - Be aged 16-30 years old
  • - Be residing in a Council of Europe member state
  • - Be active in an IFM-SEI member organisation or sister organisation
  • - Have experience as a peer educator, youth leader and/or educator in non-formal education
  • - Have experience on the topics of gender, sexuality and/or sex education
  • - Be confident working in English
  • - Be able to attend all three face-to-face activities during the project lifecycle
  • - Have the commitment and motivation to work on the project

If you are interested in joining the Let’s Talk About Sex focus group, you should send a letter outlining your motivation to join the team and your experience on the topic (no more than one A4 page) to by Sunday 7 January 2018. Focus group members will be selected through an objective scoring matrix selection system.

Please note, IFM-SEI will seek approval of any successful applicants by their organisation before they can be offered a place. You may send a support letter from your organisation alongside your motivation letter if you wish.