AMSA's Local Chapter Project Directory

PROJECT DESCRIPTION/CONTACT INFORMATION
Project title Sexual Health Information Session for adolescent females
Project type(s) Community Service
Date completed 03/03/2007
Chapter Baylor COM
Project Coordinator Sarah Hernandez and Brian Rodgers
Summary of project We met in a private auditorium at Baylor, thus avoiding the schoolroom politics normally involved in talking about sexual health. As an ice breaker, the girls were asked to mold a foot out of play doh, without looking at their feet. This task was completed fairly easily. Then, the girls were asked to mold a vagina out of play doh. Most could not. We asked why the girls thought this was the case. They said things like "it's not proper", "it's embarrassing", etc. The lesson is that many youth are making sexual decisions without the benefit of knowing enough about themselves. This could lead to bad decisions adverse long-lasting consequences, for both a girl's psyche and her physical health. (idea credited to Dr. Hall of the University of the Incarnate Word, professor of human sexuality). We students said this is why we are here for them; we want to give them the information they need to make educated decisions about their sexual health, whether it be birth control methods, advice in abstinence, or the STDs that are out there. We then sat in a group and had a Q/A session. The girls asked about different means of birth control, and they asked a bout different STDs. We students were very neutral and open in our beliefs about sex. The point was to answer students' questions; we did not push any beliefs other than those that had a medical (not religious) basis.

Content area Women’s Health
Number of participants 12
Participant hours involved 12 hour(s)
PROJECT PLANNING
Coordinator roles
Coordinator hours hour(s)
FUNDING & ADVERTISING
Total project cost $6 for play doh and snack
Project funding Donation
Funding breakdown of sources and/or donations:
Project advertising We collaborated with Amigas Latinas, a group of high schoolers who wish to attend college or professional school. We have collaborated with them before, and it worked out well.
PROJECT EVALUATION
Success rating
(1 = unsuccesful, 5 = very successful)
5
Lessons/suggestions Collaborating with an outside group requires trust in the leader of that group to talk with the teens about the event. I suggest collaborating with a group you trust, or advertizing in the community thus recruiting the teens directly. I also suggest making it a group of weekly sessions lasting a month. We had a great lineup of information and Q/A about body image, nutrition, and physical/mental health, but we did not get to it that day. The girls had many wonderful questions about sexual health, and we decided to change our plans to answer all of the questions.

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS
Comments The medical students involved in the Q/A session were open-minded and well-educated on sexual health. We presented answers in a neutral unbiased manner, which is why I believe we were so successful. We created a neutral, comfortable environment. The girls were really open, and asked whatever was on their minds.