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Canadian Public Health Association


Preventing Youth Dating Violence: Building capacity for comprehensive sexuality education in Canada

Invitation for Applications
We are currently accepting applications from agencies and organizations across Canada who are interested in collaborating with CPHA and the Centre for Sexuality on implementing this project. This will involve implementing the Centre for Sexuality’s comprehensive sexual health program (referred to as ‘Relationship and Sexual Health Education’ or ‘RSE’) with youth in school and community settings. Successful applicants will receive training in program facilitation, will deliver the curriculum in their community, and will be involved in the evaluation of the RSE program as a dating violence prevention strategy.

Application Form (docx)

Applications must be received by 11:59 PM (EST) December 4, 2019.

Project Summary
CPHA, in partnership with the Centre for Sexuality, is adapting a comprehensive sexuality education curriculum and evaluating its effectiveness as an intervention for youth dating violence prevention. By applying a broad understanding of sexual health and well-being, CPHA aims to address healthy sexual relationships free of violence.

The purpose of this project is to enable youth to develop and practice the skills needed to make healthy decisions with regards to their sexuality and relationships, with the ultimate goal of helping to prevent youth dating violence in Canada. The project will likewise contribute to a greater understanding of the optimal ways to support professionals in delivering an evidence-based, comprehensive sexuality education curriculum to youth within school and community-based settings.

As part of this project, CPHA will partner with six community organizations across Canada to support and provide training related to the delivery and evaluation of the adapted curriculum in school and community-based settings in their respective communities. This project will value youth strengths and agency by incorporating feedback directly from Canadian youth throughout the project duration, and respect the sexual rights of all persons by applying a health equity and trauma- and violence-informed framework to all project activities.

Previous evaluations of sexual education curricula have focused primarily on outcomes related to use of contraception and delayed initiation of sexual activity. CPHA aims to address an omitted outcome: healthy sexual relationships free of violence. Evaluation of the adapted curriculum will therefore focus on improvements in youth knowledge, attitudes and skills related to healthy relationships and consent, including capacity related to negotiation and initiation of desired experiences and the ability to recognize unwanted or violent experiences in oneself and in others.

The project is funded by the Public Health Agency of Canada through the Preventing Gender-Based Violence: the Health Perspective – Teen/Youth Dating Violence Prevention initiative.

We received Research Ethics Board approval from Health Canada to undertake the following project activities:

  • Focus Groups

We are in the process of running focus groups with youth aged 12-19 who reside in Canada. Focus group conversations cover topics pertaining to sexual health education and feedback on learning experiences. If you work with youth in this age range and would be interested in hosting a focus group, please contact Erin Laverty, Project Officer.

  • Online Survey

As part of this project, we have launched an online survey to hear from youth in Canada aged 16-25 years about their sexual health education, learning, and experiences regarding (un)healthy relationships. After completing the survey, participants can enter a draw to win one of five $50 prizes. The survey is available in English only. Access the survey.

For more information, please contact National Programs.

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