Council launches ‘Summer of Love’ campaign encouraging safe sex

young pepple at event drinking 600px marvin meyer IB5bld weak unsplashSouthampton City Council and partners have launched a campaign to encourage young people to take care of their sexual health and drug or alcohol use this summer.

 

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The city council says with 2,291 new diagnoses of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) made in Southampton in 2020, and an estimated 10,125 young people having taken an illicit drug in the city in the last year, the ‘Summer of Love’ campaign aims to highlight the support available to young people in the city.

It points to several ways young people can access advice and support, including:

  • Local pharmacies which offer free emergency hormonal contraception for people of any age if things don’t go to plan. To find your local pharmacy, visit https://www.nhs.uk/service-search/pharmacy/find-a-pharmacy.
  • Solent NHS Trust's Integrated Sexual Health service, which offers information, support, a range of contraception choices including condoms, and testing and treatment for STIs both online and at in-person clinics. To find out more, visit https://www.letstalkaboutit.nhs.uk/.
  • No Limits, which operates a free sexual health clinic every Thursday with a specialist sexual health nurse. STI testing and pregnancy testing is available at their open access advice centre in central Southampton. Free, non-judgemental advice and support about drug or alcohol use is also available via the DASH project, which is available for young people under the age of 25. To find out more, visit https://www.nolimitshelp.org.uk

  • Change Grow Live, a support service for adults (aged 25 years and over) and families who are struggling with their drug or alcohol use. Free, confidential advice and support is available in-person or via their alcohol support line. To find out more, visit https://www.changegrowlive.org/drug-alcohol-service-southampton

  • Parent Support Link, a free support service for the family and friends of people who use drugs and/or alcohol, or those who are problematic gamblers. Parent Support Link offers a free, confidential 24/7 telephone support line, face-to-face support, group support sessions, well-being workshops, bereavement groups, educational sessions, and acupuncture. To find out more, visit: https://www.pslcharity.org.uk/

Cllr Lorna Fielker, cabinet member for health, adults and leisure, said: “Making positive choices about contraception and being educated on the effects of substance use is important not just for your physical health, but your mental wellbeing too.

“We work alongside our partners across the city to ensure that young people and adults can be supported in a holistic way. It’s important that young people feel able to make informed decisions about their relationships, sex and drug or alcohol use, and that they know where to go to for help and support should they need it.”

Photo by Marvin Meyer on Unsplash

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