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Youth sexual health manual

Published on 30.10.2023 at 11:49

This manual looks at how gender and sexual health literacy influences youth health. It starts by highlighting that gender and sexual health literacy refers to access to the right knowledge and development of the right skills or attitudes on how sexual health and rights are influenced by socially constructed gender norms. Gender literacy involves understanding social and cultural aspects of gender, including the roles, norms, and expectations associated with being a man, a woman, and non-binary, and the impact of gender on one’s identity, expression, sexuality, and relationships.


Whereas sexual health literacy involves the understanding of one's own sexual identity, and the range of sexual behaviours and practices that exist. Gender and sexual health are not fixed nor static concepts, they are both reflected by an ongoing process that requires ongoing learning, reflection, and awareness about one’s body, gender, sexuality and engaging with diverse perspectives and experiences of the people who do not conform to the traditional gender norms. It also refers to acquiring knowledge, and skills to access, understand, evaluate, and apply sexual health information within social, sexual, and health contexts to make informed decisions regarding sexual health and well-being.


Socially and culturally constructed sexual and gender norms that do not allow the youth to connect with their gender identity, sex, and sexuality, leave many youth without ever realising what sexual and emotional intimacy means in relationships. Taking a step further, the manual explores how understanding differences in gender and sexuality influence how youth get in touch, express their sexual desire. Expressing one’s sexual desire requires emotional safety, but emotional safety requires good communication and listening skills without which it is not possible to build a safe space. And without emotional safety, it is not feasible to express one’s sexual needs and desires. Go to the manual

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