Femtech Fes! 2022: A Call To Action for Inclusive Sexual Education in Asia.
On 15th October 2022 as part of Femtech Fes! 2022 in Tokyo, Japan - fermata Singapore sat down with three individuals to discuss the importance of sexual education in Asia and how we can make progressive steps to become a more inclusive community in and out of a classroom.
Watch the video above, or scroll down to read through the captured highlights of the video.
Enlarging the scope of our national curriculum
- Creating inclusive sexual education starts by going beyond a curriculum which teaches reproduction and contraception.
- Consent and negotiation needs to be taught early on.
- Curriculums are shifting but we are still in the vestiges of a system focused on reproductive health / activities, the anatomy, abstinence and contraception.
- This is also based on an abstinence and fear based approach. They still exclude the precepts of gender and sexually diverse families.
How are the (small) shifts appearing
- Schools are starting to teach more about them and the importance of being inclusive, allies.Through the route of Diversity & Inclusion ( ethics and human rights ) but not through the one of sexual wellness and sexual health (from Akané)
Invisible = discrimination
- They reported that LGTBQA+ are being discriminated against by being invisible , not having their experienced represented in their education , their not actively getting the education they need
Quote from Elizabeth “From Australia, 2018 survey 55 percent of youth are having sex by year 12 , but teenager are reporting to have sex for pleasure and not for reproduction”
- We need to promote Gender diversity. We need to discuss the deeper meaning of why we are seeking pleasure , safe sex , how we communicate and negotiate consent .
On a society level we are making small steps. But we do not have the policy in place to support a shifting within the curriculum.
- Infographic on inclusive sex education: A good example focusing on inclusive language.
- Sex is a Funny Word by Cory Silverberg: A comic book for kids that includes children and families of all makeups, orientations, and gender identities.
- Terrence Higgins Trust: Sexual health for trans and non-binary people.
- Agents of Ishq - Inclusive sex education page for youths and young adults. Uses stories and visuals to talk about sexual wellness and relationship.
- Seema Anand Storytelling - Uses storytelling to impart sex positive and educational information
- Science of Sex Podcast - Host interviews researchers on various studies that they've done within the realm of sexual wellness and empowerment.
- I Wish Someone Told Me - Features real, raw and honest sex stories from Asians.
- The Rainbow Network: An intimate peer support group of workers who would meet to discuss the shared challenges they faced when working towards meeting the needs of LGBTIQ+ young people.
- The Youth Pride Network: Western Australia's peer-led advocacy body for LGBTIQA+ young people.
- Q Life: Provides Australia-wide anonymous, LGBTI peer support and referral for people wanting to talk about a range of issues including sexuality, identity, gender, bodies, feelings or relationships.
- PFlag: The first and largest organization dedicated to supporting, educating, and advocating for LGBTQ+ people and their families
- LesBeHeard: A digital platform run by queer women and non-binary folks with great resources to learn more about LGBTQIA+ issues, build community and empower.
- Oogachaga: A long-running, community-based non-profit that provides LGBTQIA+ counseling, youth programs and professional training.
- T Project: supporting Singapore's transgender youth through outreach and advocacy with counseling, shelter, resources and professional training.
- Sayoni: Advocates for queer and gender diverse women through research and advocacy.
- The Heartweavers: supports LGBTQIA+ community through digital stories and social media campaigns
- Leading sexologists for individual support:
- Dr. Angela Tan- Academy of Relationship and Sex
- Andrea Tan- Athena Rising Coaching and Consulting
Akané Kousaka (向坂あかね, she/her), LICSW, is a co-director of Proud Futures, an organization that works to create the now and the future of where LGBTQ+ children and youth can feel proud. Akané believes in the resilience of the LGBTQ+ communities of color, and the power of being in the present moment and learning about self as essential tools for healing and self-actualization. Akané identifies as a queer transnational multicultural multilingual cisgender woman of color, an advocate for the wellbeing of trans and queer people of color, a therapist, and a clinical social worker.
Jasmine King, is a Malaysian-based Sex Positive Advocate and founder of Jasexplains; a safe, sex positive and educational platform to empower individuals to make informed choices on their bodies, sexuality and rights. Through the platform, Jasmine hosts community engagements, talks and workshops, as well as her own sex podcast, “I Wish Someone Told Me”.
Elizabeth Tekanyo is a professional sexologist, researcher and co-founder of sextech start-up, Kinsae, specialising in future-focused sexual health products for women and the LGBTQIA+ community worldwide. Driven to do business that improves health outcomes and human rights for women and minorities, Elizabeth believes in the power of research backed strategy, ethical business practices and the ability for individuals to positively impact the world around them. She is from the Silicon Valley and currently lives in Perth, Western Australia. She enjoys the beach, hiking and reading feminist novels in her spare time.
Moderated by Francesca Geary-Stingl, Country Director of fermata Singapore