autumn

Last Friday, I presented my Sexual Health workshop to my community! In the beginning of the semester, my community had been the females on the African American Theme floor; however, I expanded my community to everyone on the Afro floor so that everyone would have a chance to learn something. In the beginning, I didn’t know how many people would actually come, I was anticipating maybe 5 people to come to be honest, but 17 people actually showed up. Many people came in sporadically but we always had around 7-10 people in the room at all times, which to me was better than I could have hoped for! The topics that I presented to my community were the introduction to sexual health, sexual debuts, and sexual pleasure/body image. I decided to include a brief presentation of body image at the end because I felt it was an important topic to cover even if it was something short. For the body image workshop, Melissa and I did the activity that was done in class where we asked everyone to describe their ideal person. We later discussed the importance of loving yourself/your partner and knowing there is no such thing as a perfect person. In the end, including the body image workshop provided a nice conclusion to the workshops.

I think that my community received the workshops very well! Many people in the room seemed hesitant about attending because they didn’t know exactly what to expect, but when they were there everyone was participating a lot. More specifically everyone was willing to participate in the demos and activities. We started off with everyone going around and coming up with their sexy name. I felt like that was a great way to start the workshops because it was a very playful ice breaker to a light-hearted, yet serious workshop. We continued with the condom demo, and everyone was very interested and excited to put on a condom, which was great! For one of the last demos, we did the glove handshake and that was also really exciting to see their reaction. I think that having the demos helped make it more interactive and made everyone more curious and wanting to learn more. Everyone had really great questions, were providing great commentary, and were very open-minded. All in all, I feel like my community received the workshops better than I expected!

Before presenting, I thought that things wouldn’t go well at all. There was a minor dilemma with the projector before I started so I was already in a very antsy mood. Not to help that dilemma was the fact that I was going to stand before people on my floor and present a workshop on sex. Not many people on the floor take me seriously as is, so they were surprised that I would be presenting on such a serious topic. In the beginning, while I was presenting, I was very nervous. As I continued to talk my nerves went away and it became a very natural experience presenting for them. Having Melissa there definitely helped because she was able to answer questions that I wasn’t able to answer so easily. Everyone congratulated me after I finished, probably because they could tell I was nervous in the beginning.

At the end of the workshop, I told them about the resources at Tang for whenever they needed help. I also let them know more about the resources that SHEP provides specifically. Melissa and I made sure to especially advertise the HIV tabling we’ll be having next semester. In terms of questions they had, I told them they could always ask me about anything. I also told them they could talk to the other student leaders if they had questions I couldn’t answer. I let them know that if they had even more extensive questions they could also come see you! Overall, I think the workshops were great! I have a picture of it going on but I forgot to take a picture with everyone at the end:(

~SHEPI Autumn