Although Poland is signatory to international documents under which sex education is considered a human right, this right is not respected in Poland. Children, and young people at school, are not guaranteed reliable and up-to-date sex education. We diagnosed the fundamental problems among young people in a survey conducted among teachers, namely using vulgarity to talk about sexuality, violent conduct, and contact with pornography.
To address these issues, we conducted a series of training sessions in the project, for Educators (40 persons) to develop sex education and discrimination awareness competences, their place in education, dialogue and advocacy, and the legal path for introducing sex education as a task being a public service. The Educators used these skills to conduct 24 series of sex education workshops (a total of 218 hours of classes for 376 pupils), covering mental and physical changes during adolescence, the role of language in talking about sexuality, forming fulfilling relationships, gender and psychosexual identity, the first time, contraception, sexually transmitted diseases, safety on the Internet, pornography, and legal issues. The workshops were evaluated by conducting a survey among the pupils. During the training, the Educators drafted proposals for resolutions for their own municipalities and took measures to introduce sex education in their communities. Approximately 45 meetings were held with policy-makers. The quality of the support was assured due to continual mentoring for the Educators. We organized a national conference on a Ground-up Approach to Sex Education and a press conference upon conclusion of the project, attended by national media.
The project helped 40 people to learn to conduct and lobby for sex education and navigate the process of introducing sex education at educational facilities. Almost 400 young people were given lessons on sex education and awareness of discrimination.
The project changed the starting point – sex education is available in towns in which the activities were performed. In the long term, it will create the fibre for a partnership and support for sex education, connecting small towns and experienced educators.