We are delighted to announce the launch of SX’s new website, a national resource focused on helping gay, bisexual and all men who have sex with men across Scotland access the information they need to improve their health and wellbeing.
SX’s work is delivered as part of Waverley Care, with SX benefitting from over 30 years’ experience working with HIV, hepatitis C and sexual health across Scotland. Commissioned as part of the Scottish Government’s Sexual Health and Blood Borne Virus Framework, SX’s website will help men have consensual and pleasurable sex with the least harm, for them and their partner(s).
In developing the website, SX have listened to partner services and the voices of gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men to ensure the information we provide is what men want and, reflects the issues and challenges they experience in life. Through providing a comprehensive one-stop-shop for men to learn about their health, wellbeing and options for support, we aim to address the health inequalities men continue to face in society. With a focus on the sex gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men have, SX’s website will help improve the sexual health and wellbeing literacy of our community – no matter where they live in Scotland.
So what’s different about SX’s website?
Based on a model of harm reduction, we have developed a Risk Tool, allowing anyone accessing the website to assess their risks linked to the sex they have. Often, sexual health information is complex and difficult to understand. Our Risk Tool informs men about the strategies they can adopt to have consensual and pleasurable sex, with the least harm to them and their partner(s). This tool is a useful accompaniment to anyone working with gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men – guiding you through a simple sexual health risk assessment.
The website is accessible and easily navigated, whether you are using a phone, tablet or computer. It is specifically designed to be used on the go, with quick access to information wherever people are.
We know sexual health is not experienced in isolation and is informed by physical and mental health. To address this, we have included lots of information about gay, bisexual and men who have sex with men’s health and wellbeing. This includes information on where to go to receive support, ideas for improving your mental health, a good sex guide and, Chemsex.
If you are working with gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men – SX’s website will help you stay up to date on the issues affecting men and, where to go if someone you’re working with needs support.
Testing for gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men is an important prevention strategy in reducing risk and infection rates across Scotland. By testing early, onward transmission of STIs, HIV and hepatitis is reduced while improving men’s overall health and access to treatment. Accessing to testing and treatment varies across Scotland, with barriers to accessing such services changing depending on where you live. Often, men are unaware of the services available in their locality or, are unsure where to go if they want to access services outside their locality. To address this, we have included a Testing and Service Directory – where men can find out about available testing and support options near them.
Throughout SX’s website development, we have listened to and included the expertise of professionals and community members – ensuring the information reflects what men’s needs and experiences. We will continue to develop the information hosted on our website by listening to those professionals and community members to inform our content. Gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men, continue to have poor access to services that improve their health and wellbeing – reinforcing the inequalities and stigma they face in society. Through SX’s website and our work at Waverley Care more broadly, we want to change this while challenging the stigma men face.
We asked our community members what they would like to share with you about the website. They said:
“It’s great to see tools that help me and my sexual partners understand what we can do to reduce our risk. Our health is no longer defined by condoms. As someone living with HIV, we need to get messages around PrEP and U=U out there, it will challenge stigma, which has been one of the biggest killers in our community.” – Richard, 47
“It’s nice to have information from one source, where it is clearly made by men for men. I am proud to be involved in the development of the website, it will enable our community and those starting out can have good knowledge around the issues we face and learn about having good sex.” – Shane, 23
The website is kept up to date with regular contributions from gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men, alongside contributions from those working with our community. Contributions can include magazine styled topics and blog pieces, which will provide anyone using the site with examples of real life issues men face and, topics that may be of interest to anyone interested in improving the lives of gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men. We also value your views on how you find using our website and, whether we are providing the kind of content that meets your needs – if you would like to contribute to our website or provide feedback on how you found using our website – please get in touch with firstname.lastname@example.org or Alastair.email@example.com.
We believe at SX, that gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men should be able to access information that is accurate, accessible and relevant to them and their lives. As part of our national programme, we are delighted to announce the launch of a national network, which will build on the efforts of providers and community members alike to develop information that is specific and targeted at improving the sex, health and wellbeing of gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men across Scotland. Complementing the development of our national website, this group will bring together representatives from service providers, academics and community members to create resources that will help improve the sex men are having alongside their health and wellbeing. If you are interested in getting involved with this, you can contact Alastair.firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
We would like to thank the Scottish Government for funding this project, whose support means we can make a positive difference in the health and wellbeing of gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men across Scotland.
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