How do we get started? My congregation has never done sexuality education before.
Introducing sexuality education into your congregation can be a wonderful opportunity to put faith into action. Developing an effective congregational commitment involves a four-part process:
- building allies
- forming an oversight committee
- educating and inspiring the congregation
- making the program an ongoing part of the congregation’s ministry.
A resource to help you get started is The Advocacy Manual for Sexuality Education, Health, and Justice, available from the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) Bookstore, which includes the article "Supporting Sexuality Education in Your Congregation," by Rev. Cynthia Breen. We also recommend purchasing copies of the curricula well in advance of starting the program, so that you and your congregation’s leadership can be familiar with Our Whole Lives (OWL) before introducing it. Don’t feel you need to introduce all six levels in one or even two years. Start with the age level for which there is the greatest need and interest, and build from there. Involve the parents of the appropriate age group in the earliest planning. Encourage your religious educator to attend OWL workshops at district or national conferences.
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