CHOICE BLOG

Europe Unite for cse rights

We still have a long way to go when it comes to comprehensive sexual education (CSE). In November European youth advocates from Cyprus, Georgia, Poland, Romania and the Netherlands came together to set up an advocacy plan to bring attention to the need for comprehensive sexuality education. Based on research, they identified the most pressing challenges that need to be tackled in order to make CSE possible for all European youth.

Eastern Europe is a region that still faces huge economic and social disparities and persisting inequalities, which hinder human rights’ advancement. Recently, the region has encountered the rise of well-organized and funded opposition aiming to block youth and women from having access to basic reproductive and sexual health services and information. Not only are young women in Eastern Europe three times more likely to have an abortion or unintended pregnancy than young women in Western Europe, the region also struggles with a growing epidemic of HIV/AIDS. In addition, Gender-based violence is widespread according to an EU-wide survey, homophobic and transphobic attitudes persist, and a significant part of Europe’s youth population still does not have access to comprehensive sexuality education.

But it’s not just an Eastern European issue

In Western European countries such as the Netherlands not all young people have access to proper comprehensive sexuality education. This should change because comprehensive sexuality education programs help young people develop self-esteem and life skills that encourage critical thinking, clear communication, responsible decision-making and respectful behaviour. Only when young people are fully informed about their options can they protect themselves against diseases and make decisions about their own body.

Joining forces

This needs to change. That’s why CHOICE and YouAct teamed up to empower and encourage young leaders to influence their national policies. We are joining forces: while focussing on the key issues in each respective country, we work together and support each other in our advocacy for the implementation of CSE programs in Europe. A supportive environment is needed for CSE integration in all national policies!

So join our campaign! Follow our posts, read about the experiences young people had with sexuality education, share the infographics and talk to each other: what are your experiences and how can we make sure that comprehensive sexuality education is available for every young person in Europe?

Europe Unite for CSE Rights!

You can download the infographic on the state of Dutch CSE in Dutch and English. The infographics on Cyprus, Georgia, Poland and Romania are available on the YouAct website.