Taking care of your sexual health

Header image for the article Taking care of your sexual health Credit: FANSHAWE STUDENT UNION PUBLICATIONS AND COMMUNICATIONS DEPT.

From sexually transmitted infections (STIs) to being sexually unsatisfied to unplanned pregnancy, understanding your sexual health is undeniably vital.

Your physical, social, emotional, and psychological well-being is significantly correlated to your sexuality. If you are encountering emotional or physical pain with regards to your sexual lifestyle, it’s very important to do research and seek assistance. Fanshawe’s Sexual Violence Prevention Advisor, Leah Marshall consistently updates and assesses services she solely provides for the college. Why is she extremely passionate about helping students struggling with their sexual health? 

“It’s important for students to know their sexual health because it’s a part of taking care of our overall health,” explained Marshall. “As well as being knowledgeable about what we need to do for our bodies, and what’s important to us, and perhaps some of the resources available on-campus and in the community.”

Marshall organizes numerous events and activities year-round to help combat the stigmatization of sex amongst young adults, along with myths regarding sexual health, gender-based violence, sexual violence, and sexually transmitted diseases and infections. 

During the college shutdown due to COVID-19, Marshall facilitated digital events like free trauma informed yoga classes every month. In addition to these events, Marshall undertakes the responsibility of seeking academic accommodations and works diligently to help empower survivors of sexual violence. Students can reach out any time to speak with Marshall for guidance, support, and to gain access to numerous services within the community. Aside from the on-campus options, the city also provides a variety of resources. The Middlesex-London Health Unit offers services like free condoms, free testing for sexually transmitted infections, and STI counselling. In addition to their clinical services, they also have information on sexual development.

An additional resource for survivors of sexual violence in London is Anova, a sexual assault centre which is open to any individual, including those in the LGBTQ2S+ community. Anova is also in partnership with Fanshawe, and they provide additional resources like 24- hour crisis and support lines. 

The London Cross Cultural Learner Centre also provides services and group gatherings for newcomers to Canada. Another resource available for marginalized communities is the London Intercommunity Health Centre. They specialize in providing care to individuals who experience barriers to care, like members in the LGBTQ2S+ community. 

Acknowledging issues pertaining to your sexual health is essential. Remember, there are individuals, like Marshall, that are knowledgeable and available to help. It’s important to investigate and book appointments with any resource which best suits your situation and comfort. Also, many organizations and professionals in this field strongly value privacy and confidentiality. Their task is to support, thus, there are numerous centres open to everyone.