Students learned about safe sex on Valentine’s Day

Dr.+Lena+Hann+speaks+with+Katie+Oestmann+at+the+Sexual+Health+Fair+on+Friday.+

Dr. Lena Hann speaks with Katie Oestmann at the Sexual Health Fair on Friday.

Melida Castro

Just in time for Valentine’s Day on Feb. 14, the fourth annual Sexual Health Fair took place in the Gavle rooms to educate students and provide resources.

The Sexual Health Fair is organized by the Augustana public health department and the student organization, Positive Impact. There were many different booths set up and activities for students. Dr. Lena Hann did birth control demonstrations such as showing how IUDs are inserted, and family resources gave out information about resources for survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault.

“This fair is whatever you want to get out of it,” Senior and president of +Impact, Catherine Priebe said. For some people its engagement, it’s learning about resources both in Augustana and outside of it. Within the Quad Cities area, it’s about visibility and finding a community where they can honestly talk about sexual health in an educational and inclusive setting.”

The fair had information presented by professors, students and outside campus organizations on topics outside of heterosexual relationships. Such topics included same-sex relations, oral sex, consent, services for people that have suffered from sexual assault and more.

“Everyone received a different level of education around sexual health in high school. You have different levels of success and accuracy and stigma surrounding these topics,” Priebe said. “We want to create a safe space in which people feel comfortable to come to ask questions.”

Students took advantage of that opportunity and came to the fair to ask those questions. Many came for the first time out of curiosity and a desire to learn more about sexual health.

“I attended the fair with one of my friends without knowing what to expect. I believe it is really important for Augustana to have this type of fair since it provided knowledge to their students about how they should be safe in their sex life,”  Sophomore Antonella Laitano said. “I really believe the group of people who organized this event did a great job providing information for all people [including the LGBTQIA+ community] and contraceptives for students.”

The fair related sexual health with off campus resources and contextualized it with the larger Quad City community. One booth offered off campus resources for students to reach out to as well.

“It’s okay to have sex, it’s okay to be a sexual being, but how do you protect yourself? The Quad Cities have a very high rate of STDs and we are working to try and prevent that by giving students the information they need,” Senior Willow Kornoski said. “The Quad Cities have a large community outreach organization and they do stuff like STDs and HIV testing, they even offered these tests on campus last fall term.

“We want people to take the resources we give them and take their health into their own hands,” Kornoski said. “Protect yourself and the people around you.