By Gillian Silver, MPH, CHES | January 8, 2020
Research Dissemination Specialist, ETR
My very first day working at ETR fell on our organization’s All Staff Retreat. It was an energizing day that allowed our growing staff to share priorities and interests, and to embrace a growth mindset in how we approach our work. An idea explored by Carol S. Dweck, adopting a growth mindset helps us move through challenges by identifying the opportunity within them. Inspired by my introduction to the organization, I wondered how the field of sexuality education can apply a #growthmindset to the topic of adolescent romantic relationships.
By Mia Barrett, MEd | December 19, 2019
Research Associate, ETR
Cheers erupted from the audience at the 24th Congress of the World Association of Sexual Health (WAS) in Mexico City when Anne Philpott of The Pleasure Project urged sexuality educators to “Stop preaching and start having fun! Learn to say YES to good, safe sex!” Later, WAS released an official Pleasure Declaration, stating that sexual pleasure is a fundamental human right. In a world where public health is so often focused on preventing negative outcomes and managing ill-health, this declaration and the conference’s focus on pleasure was revolutionary.
By John Shields, PhD, MSW | December 13, 2019
Senior Research Scientist, ETR
The US Department of Education’s proposed regulations on Title IX recently took an important step forward in the adoption process and the regulations may become official policy in the next few weeks. From our perspective as consultants and researchers in the K-12 space, our analysis of the regulations yields several significant implications on Title IX infrastructure, practices, and compliance.
By Emma Schlamm | December 9, 2019
Program Coordinator, YTH Initiative at ETR
The YTH Initiative of ETR, in partnership with the Public Health Institute (PHI) and GoJoven Honduras, is implementing and evaluating ZonaSegura. ZonaSegura is a multi-faceted tech-based intervention that uses a website, native mobile app, and a WhatsApp messaging campaign to prevent teen dating violence among Honduran youth. The evaluation has demonstrated that the power of partnership and human effort is an essential and irreplaceable component of a digital solution’s success.
By Vignetta Charles, PhD | December 2, 2019
Chief Executive Officer, ETR
Sunday, December 1, 2019, marked the 31st observance of World AIDS Day. The theme for 2019 is “Ending the HIV/AIDS Epidemic: Community by Community.” This feels especially appropriate since we have been developing community-driven responses from the beginning. While reflecting on the nearly four decades of the HIV pandemic, ETR started looking back at our response since the earliest reported cases. Check out this retrospective of ETR’s history developing some of the nation's leading HIV education, training and research.
By Vignetta Charles, PhD | November 26, 2019
Chief Executive Officer, ETR
I’m grateful every year for the opportunity to share ETR’s science-based practice of expressing gratitude. This year, I’m especially thankful for living our values of centering equity. This includes the continued efforts of aligning our work with the Health Equity Framework. It also includes our internal work to center racial equity in our lives and our workplace.
By Cara Silva, MPH | October 1, 2019
Director of Programs, ETR's YTH Initiative
Digital communication has disrupted the ways we socialize, communicate, and—let’s face it—how we function. Gone are the days where a check-in with a friend was a knock at the door or a telephone call. It’s now likely a quick text or a thumbs-up “like” on a social media post. This new way of communicating has also contributed to how we meet, flirt, and date people to whom we are attracted. Youth in particular are turning to online spaces to build community and explore sexual relationships, particularly in regions where access to peers is limited.
By Vignetta Charles, PhD | September 17, 2019
Elizabeth Taylor started her AIDS activism in the late 1980’s. She was watching friends fall tragically ill from a preventable disease, and she wasn’t seeing an appropriate response. She leveraged her celebrity and her fierce determination and took action.
I actually have something in common with Elizabeth Taylor.
By Pamela Anderson, PhD | September 12, 2019
Senior Research Associate, ETR
I literally love this book! I think everyone should read it. Shafia Zaloom is offering a unique new resource, and it’s fabulous.
I’m a developmental psychologist and researcher specializing in adolescent romantic relationships. That means I’ve seen plenty of books for parents and educators on how to have conversations with teens about sex and relationships. There are some great resources out there—and this is one of my new favorites for a number of reasons.
By Shafia Zaloom | Setpember 10, 2019
Health Educator, Urban School, San Francisco
When talking about sexuality with adolescents, it's often easier to get the message across when you take the sex out of it. This is counterintuitive, I know. So here’s a story, a classroom activity and some examples of classroom discussions with my class that explain the concept.
By Taryn Gal, MPH, CPH, CHES and Brittany Batell, MPH, MSW | August 28, 2019
Executive Director (TG) and Program and Engagement Manager (BB), MOASH
There has been an amazing push for greater inclusivity in sex education in recent years. The field offers programs that are more inclusive for LGBTQ+ youth, for survivors of trauma, and for youth with learning differences or developmental disabilities. We make these efforts because we are committed to creating a learning environment where all identities and choices are honored.
That’s why it’s also important for us to be sure we are creating welcoming, inclusive and effective sexuality education for expectant and parenting youth (EPY).
By Chris Wilson-Smith & Michael Everett, MHS | July 25, 2019
HIV/Sexual Health Trainer (CW-S) & Project Coordinator (ME), ETR
How do we celebrate the innovative spirit of youth? How do we encourage young people's creative leadership and put it to work to solve real-world problems? How do we leverage youth interests and abilities in technology to amplify their power?
ETR’s YTH Initiative is delivering a mentorship program that will do all of these things. Introducing Project LIYT (Leadership + Innovation + Youth + Technology)!
By ETR | May 31, 2019
We are all members of a global society. We are excited that ETR’s recent merger with YTH brings a deeper and more experienced global perspective to our organization’s work. YTH has a long history of international work with youth communities. The YTH Initiative presence at the upcoming Women Deliver conference demonstrates this beautifully.
By Ahna Suleiman, DrPH | May 29, 2019
AYSRH, Developmental Science & Youth Engagement Consultant
Consent is complicated. And learning about consent is even more so. Thinking back over conversations and experiences I’ve had the last six months, I am struck by how truly complicated it is.
By Barb Flis | May 23, 2019
Founder, Parent Action for Healthy Kids
I am approaching my 15th year of helping parents talk to their kids about sex. It’s hard for me to fathom that this equates to several hundred workshops, impacting thousands of parents and supportive adults. The parents from those early years now have adult children and, in many cases, even grandchildren.
I’ve been fortunate to have had contact with some alum who tell me how much our workshop affected them.
By Marcia Quackenbush, MS, MFT, MCHES | May 8, 2019
Senior Editor, ETR
One measure of a successful training or conference is whether you learned something useful. Did you change your thinking? Get inspired by leaders in the field? Will you do anything differently when you get back to your work?
By any of those measures, 2019’s YTH Live conference was simply dazzling for me.
By JT Perez, Jahnell Butler, Tatyana Moaton & Camille Lewis | April 23, 2019
ETR Consultants; Prevention Educator, Alianza (JTP); Human Resources Manager for Howard Brown Health (TM); Translluminati Program Manager (CL)
How do we increase the effectiveness of High Impact HIV prevention? How do we reach the individuals and communities most at risk with strategies that work?
One of the most important steps we can take is to identify who those individuals and communities are, then engage their leaders to create and deliver prevention programs. Our group represents one approach to this strategy.
By Tracy Wright, MAEd | April 15, 2019
Program Manager, ETR
Think about a sexuality educator you know. Think about something brilliant or inspired or compassionate they’ve done in their teaching. Think about the students they serve and what those students need in the classroom. Think about the challenges that educator faces in their school or district, community or state.
If you’re like me, what you get when you think through these things is one highly dedicated, deeply committed individual.
By Teagan Drawbridge-Quealy, MEd & MSW | April 4, 2019
Get Real Trainer, Planned Parenthood League of MA
Here in the Northeast, it feels like winter might just be fading. Spring is coming, and with spring, the end of the school year is just around the corner. For many educators the start of spring also means the start of sex education in their health classes, coinciding with the changing of seasons. Maybe there is something to the “birds and the bees” after all!
By BA Laris, MPH | April 2, 2019
Program Manager, ETR
“I was 14 and I just didn’t know…”
Many of us work with teens who face challenges because they didn’t have health information and resources they needed. We put a lot of effort into gathering our own information about their circumstances so we can offer them the best support possible.
But what do you do when you don’t know?