SUPPORT OUR RELATIONSHIPS AND SEX CAMPAIGN
The Government is updating official guidance on Relationships and Sex Education. This is the first time in almost twenty years that the government has looked at what young people need to know about relationships and sex.
The world has moved on since 2000 and Relationships and Sex Education needs to move with it. Today the average teenager spends almost a day a week online which is why Relationships and Sex Education needs go beyond the classroom to reach young people. We are calling on the government to launch a new fund to help deliver information and guidance on Relationships online as well as in the classroom.
New guidance on Relationships and Sex shouldn’t just be about sex, it should give young people great relationship skills to help them today and later in life. We are also calling on the government to ensure young people have the skills and knowledge they need for better relationships when they grow up to help them achieve their long term relationship goals.
FASTN Relationships and Sex Education (RSE) Statement
Catherine Hine, Chief Executive of the Family Stability network, said:
“We welcome the Government’s draft guidance on the future of Relationships and Sex Education (RSE) and its commitment to help young people achieve their stated relationships ambitions.
“It’s fantastic to see a number of our recommendations included in the guidance. More than 70% of young people want Relationships Education. Just under three quarters of young people consider their ambition to have a long term, healthy and committed relationship - in many cases through marriage - as important as their career aspirations for adulthood.
“The values that are proven to underpin healthy intimate relationships – respect, commitment, communication, self-awareness and empathy – are inclusive principles which Government has recognised should form the basis of the curriculum. Relationships can have ups and downs – there are good times and bad – so the new guidance must ensure young people are empowered with the understanding and skills that support the commitment journey, which so many of them aspire to.
“We look forward to working alongside partners and Government so that the guidance delivers the relationship ambition of young people in practice. This includes ensuring relationship support is available for young people outside the school, particularly through trusted sources online, where the majority of young people go looking for information. Youth workers, community organisations and parents are also key partners, who must be adequately supported to talk openly with young people about relationships.
“During the consultation period and beyond we will share with Government and frontline partners, examples of good practice that can strengthen future delivery of the curriculum. The consultation closes on Wednesday 7 November and we encourage parents, young people and teachers to seize this historic moment for the relationship health of the next generation. More information on how to respond is available here: https://consult.education.gov.uk/pshe/relationships-education-rse-health-education/
The Family Stability Network (FASTN) is a community of individuals and organisations committed to reversing family breakdown in the U.K. We are passionate about changing attitudes and behaviour, equipping people to build healthy, fulfilling relationships that last – for the benefit of this generation and the next.
FASTN is working with organisations across the U.K to develop new ways of promoting the benefits of long-term, stable, relationships, enabling more children to grow up safe, secure, and nurtured by both parents.
Why is family stability a concern?
Stable family relationships are the foundation of strong societies, shaping our physical, emotional and psychological wellbeing . Yet today, one in two children will grow up without both parents, with an additional 20,000 parents raising children alone every year. Although these trends are nationwide, they are most notable in our poorest communities, where the number of young people affected by family breakdown rises to two thirds .
The social costs are significant. Children affected by family breakdown are 50% more likely to perform poorly at school, are more at risk of poor mental health, and are less able to form meaningful friendships. Adults’ mental and physical health is also negatively impacted, in turn affecting their ability to achieve at work and parent effectively.
The economic costs are also great, with family breakdown costing the Government an estimated £49 billion per year.
What difference will the Family Stability Network make?
Many organisations are currently involved in research, lobbying and providing practical support to promote family stability. Few, if any, are influencing culture, attitudes and behaviour.
FASTN seeks to fill this gap, using the growing influence of social media to shape the debate around relationships, equipping people to make positive choices and build fulfilling relationships that last.
Our first campaign, Status, targets those aged 16-25; future campaigns will focus on other age groups or specific life stages. The core messages at the heart of our work are:
- Healthy and stable relationships which last are good for you and for children
- You have the power to choose who you share your life with
- Decide, don’t slide – take time to think about what you want and need from a relationship to make it work at each stage of life
- A good long-lasting relationship is the start of a great adventure – work at a relationship and improve it to help it grow with you over time
Launched in 2016, Status seeks to engage young people in conversation about healthy relationships. Our research has indicated that 18-25 year olds are curious to know more about “real” relationships: what’s normal, how to connect, how to communicate and how to cope with the inevitable “ups and downs” of real relationships.
Our website and social media presences provide a platform for young people to access the support and tools they need, equipping them to decide who they share their life with.
Find out more at www.statusonline.org
Add your voice to the movement.
The Family Stability Network is a diverse group of individuals and organisations, passionate about reversing family breakdown in the U.K. We want to partner with those who share in our vision to make stable, loving relationships an achievable goal.
You can get involved in a number of ways:
- Spread the word – follow us on social media, share our posts and help spread the message
- Contribute to the campaign – partner with us to promote your work, share your skills or services
- Chat to us – if there are other ways you would like to get involved, get in touch and let us know
Are you a relationship expert and effective communicator? Then we want to hear from you. We're hiring family stability spokespeople to work with us on a flexible basis. Read more and apply here.