What We Do
Empowering Young People
Since its inception, Talk has worked to empower young people to make informed, responsible choices about their relationships and sexual health, and it remains at the heart of our mission.
Efforts are currently underway to launch CampusChat, a virtual adaptation of Talk’s classroom-based educational model, enabling us to extend the reach of our advocacy and serve more young people in need.
Advocating for Better Sex Ed
We believe that access to the type of sex education Talk provides is a human right and that the quality of education young people receive should not be dictated by where they live or the school they attend.
We also believe virtual sex education is the future.
By designing innovative online approaches, studying them extensively, and promoting the best practices we find, we hope to help the field of sex education forge a path forward, and deliver on our belief that every young person has to information, tools, and skills they need to live healthy happy lives.
Four Core Elements We’re Working to Adapt
Not Your Grandma’s Sex Ed
In the classroom, the forum we create is participant-driven, so the content is relevant, and we don’t shy away from hard conversations.
We’re leveraging the insights we’ve gleaned from 10 years of classroom experience to help young people:
Interpret media messages and distinguish them from reality.
Explore how gender norms affect perceptions, attitudes, and behavior.
Understand the effects of pornography on social and sexual development.
Interact with social media in healthy and productive ways.
While exploring virtual approaches, we continue to:
Meet people where they are.
Solicit feedback throughout development and course-correct as needed.
We’ve built an ongoing needs-assessment into our process to ensure that programming continues to meet participants’ needs throughout its delivery.
Put a premium on understanding our impact.
Creating a Safe Space
Providing a forum where all participants feel safe, respected, and heard is the heart of our approach.
We talk “with” rather than “at” our online users and participants.
We build a knowledge base, connect the dots, and emphasize how the information can be applied in real life.
We help online users and participants think through both sides of issues and weigh costs and benefits.
We help young people learn how to make decisions for themselves in accordance with their own beliefs and values.
Parents are a critical component, Not an afterthought.
Teens consistently say parents most influence their decisions about sex. At the same time, parents underestimate their own influence and overestimate the influence of peers and the media.
Talk’s educational model underscores the important role both parents and educators have to play and encourages parents to convey their beliefs and values to guide teens’ decision making.
Although we’re currently at work on a virtual adaptation targeting rising college freshmen, we can’t wait to develop virtual adaptations specifically for parents and younger teens in the near future. Click here to support our work.