February 12 offers most the opportunity to issue forth a little brainpower to something that we often overlook. It is Sexual and Reproductive Health Awareness Day – a day subject to a topic that may make some people uncomfortable, but a topic that undoubtedly needs serious discussion nevertheless. I ought not to be a major hassle; a quick talk and a simple suggestion is sometimes all it takes to make a difference.
The premise, or objective rather, of this day is somewhat simple. Well, it is simple in theory – we then just need people to answer the call to action. The day’s purpose is to raise awareness about sexual and reproductive health issues, first and foremost. A major cog in this campaign is to educate people on the spread of sexually transmitted infections and diseases. Developing countries, where the spread of such infections are particularly rampant, need special attention.
Much like any other health crisis, the public not only needs to be educated, but deserves to be so – all ought to be entitled to good health. It is a basic human right. The National Health Portal of India also claims that such an education should go beyond basic sexual health and the spread of diseases. They also urge parents to be clear and open with their children should they have any questions. In fact, parents are pressed to initiate such a conversation with their children.
“Sexual health is a broad area that encompasses many inter-related challenges and problems. Key issues and concerns are human rights related to sexual health, sexual pleasure, eroticism and sexual satisfaction, diseases (HIV/AIDS, STIs, and RTIs), violence, female genital mutilation, sexual dysfunction and mental health related to sexual health.” The idea is a comprehensive one; it is just a case of people doing away with the idea that sex is a taboo topic.
The annual, worldwide campaigns focus on, but are not limited to the following objectives:
- To create and spread awareness of sexual health and reproduction issues.
- To reduce the spread of sexually transmitted diseases.
- To prevent and control sexually transmitted diseases.
- To provide sexual education to teenagers and adolescents.
- To help people practice safe sex and promote the use of contraceptives.
- To promote responsible family planning.
- To encourage people to openly discuss matters surrounding sex.
- To encourage parents to discuss sex and the reproductive process with their children.
- To offer workshops as an educative tool.