The Galway brach of the National LGBT Helpline is hosting a free information evening on sexual health with speakers Dr. Patrcia Cremin and Clare Coleman from the UCHG Sexual Health Clinic. The helpline, which launched in Galway in May 2015, recently took up residence in the newly opened resource centre and is doing all it can to support and encourage the use of this long awaited venue. Lead volunteer Michal O’Malley has arranged this information evening not just for the volunteers of the helpline but for anyone in the LGBT+ community and it’s family and friends. “Sometimes people have questions they’re too frightened to ask their friends due to the stigma and embarrassment surrounding the subject of sexual health,” said Michael, “Hopefully this night will answer some of those questions.”
With the introduction and availability of dating apps on smart phones sexual health has never been more important. 2016 saw a sharp increase in a number of sexually transmitted infections (STI’s) and this can sometimes be attributed to a lack of awareness of the different types of STI as well as people not knowing their own status, especially as the most common symptom is no symptom at all. “Our volunteers take calls from people looking for information on this very subject,” said Rob Partridge, coordinator of the Galway helpline office, “so it’s obvious it’s an essential event to run to keep people, including our volunteers, informed.”
If you’d like to attend this free event it’s on Thursday 16th February at 7.45pm in Teach Solais LGBT+ Resource Centre, on Merchants Road, Galway. For more information about the helpline, from volunteering to peer support groups, see www.lgbt.ie. If you’re in need and want someone to talk to you can call the confidential LGBT helpline on 1890 929 539.