In my final month as a Gem at RPE I have wrapped up my Gem work- with the workshops receiving their final tweaks and ready to go. It was planned that I would deliver the workshops during my Gem time, however because of a required urgent focus on bringing in more funding my research skills were utilised in writing some funding applications. I will be staying on at RPE so in the next couple of months will get the chance to deliver the workshops- am looking forward to that. There’s lots of innovation happening here that I am excited to be able to support- including moving into doing more comprehensive sexual violence prevention/respectful relationships promotion work with young people in alternative education settings and programmes around the intersect of sexual violence and drug and alcohol use- both very important given the levels of risk in these areas.
My time as a Gem at RPE has facilitated a lot of learning for me and (eventually) the youth team- I have been working with young people for a while now and it was great to be able to bring together that knowledge with more academic knowledge in the workshops- all in the name of the youth staff at RPE doing the best job they can when working with young people (something I am very passionate about!). My Gem work, which was very focused on research and development, has reminded me of a niggling want I have had for a couple of years to get more balance between doing research (which I do love) and working directly with young people (which I love even more)- so am planning future work to get that balanced out again. A huge thank you to the Vodafone Foundation for again making my work at RPE possible- I look forward to keeping on building on it and fulfilling RPE’s vision for young people to be having positive, respectful experiences of sexual relationships.