Mazzoni Center’s educational efforts are receiving deserved attention with one of its program recently being featured in a Cosmopolitan article on sex education. Elizabeth Kahn, director of education at the center, oversees two main programs: Yes PLEASE! and Brave Schools. While both are youth education programs, they offer entirely different services. Yes PLEASE was initially started as a Center for Disease Control service offering sex education to LGBTQ youth.
Although it’s no longer run by the CDC, the intention remains the same. It seeks to fill the gap which exists in the majority of schools: the lack of LGBTQ sex education. Yes PLEASE! provide in-school lessons to high school students on this topic. Yes PLEASE! not only offers information about sex itself, but also about consent among other often excluded topics. Kahn expressed that the program aims to “have the conversations that people are afraid to have.” Aside from in-school visits, a new addition to the program has recently been made. This fall, the program was expanded to a ten course series conducted at the Mazzoni Center. It was started due to the exponential increase in the amount of worried parents seeking sex education for their LGBTQ teens.
Brave Schools is a different educational opportunity for LGBTQ students. It’s a youth leadership program based at Mazzoni Center. The program allows students to represent their schools and discuss issues relevant to the community, such as trans rights, inclusivity, etc. While other leadership programs are offered to high school students in the city, Brave Schools provides LGBTQ students the ability to discuss their own issues in an environment that feels comfortable to them.