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BBC's Sexwise provides critical sexual health information worldwide.

The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) and International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) are working together in different regions of the world to speak to people in their own languages about sexual health and reproductive rights through a new project called Sexwise.

The project consists of a Web site, books, and radio programs from the BBC. In collaboration with the IPPF and national Family Planning Associations (FPAs), the BBC has adapted and translated the radio programs, books, and Web site into 22 languages.

It has spanned the globe in three phases. Phase 1 was completed in 1996 in South Asia; Phase 2 took place in 1998 throughout Europe, Eastern Europe, and Central Asia; and Phase 3 was launched in June 2000 across Africa, the Arab region, Southeast Asia, and Latin America.

* Improve people's knowledge and understanding of their bodies and emotions

Sexwise aims to:

* Increase discussion of specific sexual and social concerns among individuals and communities

* Raise awareness about safer sex and STDs such as HIV/AIDS

* Respond to people's anxieties about sexual health

* Help people make more informed choices about their sexuality

* Dispel myths about sex and sexuality

Sexwise radio programs are designed to meet the needs of and raise issues relevant to regional audiences. They feature people describing their personal aspirations, experiences, and concerns. Topics include puberty changes, attitudes and responsibilities relating to sexual relationships, contraception, and gender issues.

Following the broadcast of radio programs, the FPAs offer advice and services to those people who want more support on particular issues. They also provide cassettes of the programs and the books in health centers, clinics, schools, and other venues.

Radio is a particularly useful format for sexuality education because it is an easily accessible and far-reaching medium. Poverty and high rates of illiteracy make radio the cheapest and most accessible source of information in many countries.

This collaboration between the BBC and IPPF is an example of how industry and NGOs can successfully link their missions to promote public health and well being.

For more information contact: BBC World Service, Bush House, Strand, London UC2B 4PH, United Kingdom. Phone: (+44) 20 7240 3456. Fax: (+44) 20 7557 1258. Visit their Web site at: http://www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice/aci_tech/features/health/sexwise
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Publication:SIECUS Report
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:00WOR
Date:Jun 1, 2002
Words:374
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