Funding supports sexual education programs

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Aimed at infection prevention

(From left) Sexual Health Centre for Cumberland County treasurer Ross Blanch, president Denise Corey and executive director Ruthie Patriquin look over plans for the coming year.


AMHERST – The Sexual Health Centre for Cumberland County board has received a $2,500 grant received from Greenshield Canada’s Community Giving Program. These funds will be used to create and pilot a new, interactive program to teach youth about sexually transmitted infection prevention.

The first focus group under this program was held with Amherst area youth on Sept. 25.

The organization held its first board meeting Sept. 24 under new president Denise Corey.

Executive director Ruthie Patriquin reported a successful 16th summer of self-esteem workshops for girls through the Go Girl Self-Esteem Workouts program. Ninety-two girls attended seven workshops in Amherst, Advocate, Parrsboro, Pugwash and River Hebert.

The sexual health centre receives tremendous community support for this program that enables them to continue the program each year.

Patriquin is looking forward to offering the Puberty Party program again this fall for nine to 12-year-olds and their parents. Separate sessions will be held for boys and girls and parents should call to pre-register.

In November, she will also offer It Wasn’t the Stork, giving parents the opportunity to share age-appropriate information with their children about conception, pregnancy and childbirth, though an interactive evening session. This session is co-ed and also for nine to 12-year-olds and parents to attend together.

Treasurer Ross Blanch reported on the success of two summer fundraisers and congratulated board members for their hard work getting donations for the holiday fundraising catalog that begins Oct. 30. The organization must raise nearly $20,000 in addition to United Way funding and a provincial allocation in order to balance its bare-bones budget.

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