The campaign to raise awareness of sexual health issues among young people in East Sussex is to get a fresh look.
The new-look “Free2bme” campaign is a joint project between East Sussex County Council and health services in the county and follows consultation with young people about what information they want and how they want to access it.
Building on previous joint working, “Free2bme” will provide more information for young people, easier access to that information through schools and colleges, more confidential drop-in sessions for young people with health advisers, and comprehensive information and advice on the Connexions 360 website for young people.
A series of posters, leaflets and small information cards have been produced under the new “Free2bme” banner.
The Rural Health bus which tours the county providing advice and information for young people has also been rebranded.
The new look for the sexual health campaign will be formally launched on 11 October.
It has already begun, though, with a series of displays and information opportunities at Freshers’ Fairs in various sixth form colleges.
Information displays and street theatre shows have also been taking place in Eastbourne and Hastings.
Diana Grice, Director of Public Health for NHS Hastings, Rother and NHS East Sussex Downs and Weald said:
“It is an extremely opportune time to be launching the new Free2bme campaign, following recent reports about young people nation-wide being more at risk than ever before from STIs.
It is crucial that young people have access to appropriate sexual health information and services.”
Cllr Meg Stroude, East Sussex County Council’s Lead Member for Children and Families said:
“This latest stage in the campaign builds on the already good work we have been doing in partnership with our colleagues at the Primary Care Trusts.
“A really important part of it has been the involvement of the young people themselves.
We have spent a lot of time talking to young people across the county about the issues that matter to them, what information they need, how they want to be able to get hold of that advice, and what they think will work in getting messages out.”
Cllr Stroude added that young people involved in the consultation had come up with the logo and the design ideas for the new publicity material.
They had also provided valuable feedback on how services should be improved to make them more young people friendly.
“Talking about sexual health issues can be difficult but it’s vitally important.
This campaign is about improving the service we provide to young people.
We want to make sure we provide them with all the information they need and that it is easily accessible.
We also need to ensure they feel comfortable about how they can get confidential advice and support if they want it.”
For more information about sexual health issues and where to go for advice and help visit www.connexions360/free2bme