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The LIEBESLEBEN Join-In Project - A School Project on Sexual Health

In the context of LIEBESLEBEN BZgA developed a low-threshold, interactive service to help prevent HIV and STIs and to promote sexual health. "LIEBESLEBEN - The Join-In Project" is a course consisting of six thematic stations and is aimed at pupils aged 12 to 18 from all secondary schools as well as teachers. Many young people during this phase in their life discover sexuality gradually and have to confront many different questions and insecurities – from physical changes and the first »relationships« to communication about feelings and the experience of sexuality.

 

Illustration of a group of students joyfully looking at big posters of symbols on the floor. The symbols represent different terms of sexual prevention.

The Project

The project provides interactive, low-threshold, quality assured information on the topics of HIV and other STIs, contraception and safe sex, body and feelings, sexuality and media, diversity and respect, as well as friendship and relationships. Each of the stations offers hands-on methods, age-appropriate scenarios for self-exploration and the opportunity for discussions among young people with specially trained moderators.

"LIEBESLEBEN - The Join-In Project" includes, in addition to the thematic stations, also a practice-oriented advanced training in which the teachers and specialists can learn about methods and materials of the new project and try them out for themselves. Following this training and the actual use of the course, each school receives a material case from the BZgA including the central methods and project materials for permanent use.

 

Project Goals

The subject of HIV and STIs is a central one from a prevention perspective, but from young people’s perspective it is just one among many. For this reason HIV and STI prevention has to be conceived and implemented in a comprehensive manner when addressed in a school context. In schools we can reach young people from different social backgrounds with our new project. In addition, new generations naturally have to acquire knowledge and competencies; it is our goal to teach these interactively in our project, and »from person to person« in conversations.

Specific goals:

  • schools and experts as well as teachers employed at schools possess different methods of communication about a variety of subjects, as well as relevant materials about preventing HIV and STIs and promoting sexual health
  • students develop a self-confident, responsible form of conduct that respects boundaries for themselves and others by confronting different topics of sexual health and self-determination
  • students, teachers, mothers, fathers, legal guardians and others authorized to care for young people lose any inhibitions they might have when it comes to communicating about sexuality-related sensitive and taboo subjects, and receive communication aids so they become (even) more able to talk about these matters and to nurture open communication quite generally
  • students and teachers are sensitized to having a respectful, non-discriminatory attitude with solidarity towards people who are HIV positive and people with different identities and sexual orientations
Illustration of people standing in different, joyful poses on a curvy rope.

Participation from the Outset

The Federal Centre for Health Education has not developed the new project just for the target groups described; the project has been developed with them from the outset and scientifically reviewed. We have included representatives of the target groups involved in the planning and implementation process from the start. At preparatory workshops, we discussed our initial thoughts in depth with representatives from the relevant ministries in the federal states, with parent-and-teacher organizations, with advice centres and competence centres working in HIV and STI prevention and sexual health. And of course we also consulted with students attending different types of school. Together and in partnership we then developed the goals stated above and compiled the central contents for six modules for the project.

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