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The Village People

No matter who you are, or where you are.....you are not alone. Connect with Healthy Gay Cornwall.

Why this campaign?

Cornwall is a diverse and geographically large place, many gay/bisexual men and men who have sex with men live in very rural pockets in Cornwall and may not have the access to certain media outlets that other, more urbanized, members of the community do in places like Truro, Newquay or Penzance. This can leave them feeling not only geographically isolated but also isolated from the wider gay community.

By advertising the services of Healthy Gay Cornwall in this way it is hoped that people will  identify with at least one of the models used in the campaign and feel more at ease to access services from an organisation they feel an affiliation with.

Historically little has been done in the media to target the gay community in Cornwall and, with the exception of Cornwall Pride, little has been done to celebrate its diversity. By celebrating our diverse community, it is hoped that we will reach more people, be able to improve the sexual health of the gay community within Cornwall and increase the visibility and accessibility of Healthy Gay Cornwall.

Meet the models:

Jimmy

What does good sexual health mean to you?

Good sexual health is most important to me, and I think it is to all gay people.

What is your experience of being LGBTQ in Cornwall?

I have been taken very positively by the LGBTQ and the straight community here. I'm a person with a very different look, I don't follow the rules of how I should act or look or try to blend in.

I wear makeup; I am a drag artist and that can be hard for a guy I start to date to accept (probably why I'm still single lol). 

In what way have you interacted with Healthy Gay Cornwall (HGC) in the past?

I have seen posters and condom packs around that have the Healthy Gay Cornwall logo on, although the logo has now changed, it is much more appealing.

Do you have any positive sexual health advice for other LGBTQ people in Cornwall who may or may not be out?

Be true to yourself, if you’re scared remember there's plenty of people like Healthy Gay Cornwall that you can talk to if u have questions, be safe, have fun, and see what's out there.

 

Omegan

What does good sexual health mean to you?

Having an ever expanding and comprehensive knowledge of matters relating to sexual health means a lot. Understanding the risks and ramifications of exercising certain behaviours and conducts is important; as is knowing what my options are should I need support on any of these topics. 

What is your experience of being LGBTQ in Cornwall?

My experience of being part of the LBGTQI community is only limited to the last few years.  This experience has been centred on what is known as ‘the scene’. This aspect of LGBTQI life is sadly the most shallow and superficial part of the LGBTQI community.  I do have limited experience with organising LGBTQI events on my local college campus.  Through this with the help of my colleagues, fellow students and HGC we have been able to spread awareness and understanding about issues primarily affecting the LGBTQI community to those who have been unaware that certain issues are a day to day occurrence for many of the students on this campus and other campuses in Cornwall. 

In what way have you interacted with Healthy Gay Cornwall (HGC) in the past?

My first interaction with HGC was when I arranged an event celebrating Cornwall Pride at Cornwall College Camborne. HGC involvement in this event centred on sexual health awareness; providing advice and support to individuals on the campus on subjects like STI’s, HIV and correct condom use.

Do you have any positive sexual health advice for other LGBTQ people in Cornwall who may or may not be out?

As much as you may feel impulsive in the moment, realise that one mistake can lead to ramifications that you may or may not have to deal with for the rest of your life.  Imagine explaining to every potential partner you meet that you are HIV +.  You may think that this is unlikely to happen to you but one mistake and this is a conversation you will be having for the rest of your life.  Don’t allow a moment that may last only minutes to dictate the rest of your life.

Meet the models:

Sam

What does good sexual health mean to you?

Self-respect and respect for others.

What is your experience of being LGBTQ in Cornwall?

I can honestly say it has never been bad living in Cornwall as a gay man. Of course, at times, I have felt alone here; but that could be said for anyone, anywhere. As well I think, for the most part, people in Cornwall are accepting and supportive.

In what way have you interacted with Healthy Gay Cornwall (HGC) in the past?

I have ordered and received free condoms through Healthy Gay Cornwall. I have volunteered and worked on a couple of stalls for Healthy Gay Cornwall at Cornwall Pride and the LGBT PACT event in Lemon Quay. I have also modelled for the Healthy Gay Cornwall website to help promote good sexual health and well-being.

Do you have any positive sexual health advice for other LGBTQ people in Cornwall who may or may not be out?

Know yourself. Think about you, be safe and get tested. There are excellent sexual health facilities in Cornwall that can and will help you, in confidence and without discrimination regardless of your issue.

 

Indra

What does good sexual health mean to you?

That I have the knowledge and understanding to make informed choices about sex, that I have regular screening and maintain a healthy outlook both physically and mentally.

What is your experience of being LGBTQ in Cornwall?

I have found Cornwall, in general, to be open-minded and accepting. For a rural community it shows a great deal of tolerance of differences.

In what way have you interacted with Healthy Gay Cornwall (HGC) in the past?

I had heard of Healthy Gay Cornwall but had never needed to access their services, now I work as an outreach worker for them.

Do you have any positive sexual health advice for other LGBTQ people in Cornwall who may or may not be out?

Understand and appreciate the risks but enjoy sex and have fun with it.

 

Kelvin

What does good sexual health mean to you?

Good sexual health is about protecting yourself and others. Everyone is entitled to enjoy sex and have a safe, fun and horny time. Respect yourself, respect others and above all else………have fun. 

What is your experience of being LGBTQ in Cornwall?

I have been out in Cornwall since I was 21, Cornwall is more forward thinking than most people actually realise. Sure some people will say throw away comments but that is all they are…..comments. Be proud of who you are and never let anyone get you down.

In what way have you interacted with Healthy Gay Cornwall (HGC) in the past?

When I moved back to Cornwall I accessed the Healthy Gay Cornwall website for information on local services. I also ordered free condoms through the website. I now work as part of Healthy Gay Cornwall, trying to improve the sexual health and well-being of gay/bisexual men and men who have sex with men in Cornwall.

Do you have any positive sexual health advice for other LGBTQ people in Cornwall who may or may not be out?

Be aware, be informed, be safe and test regularly.

The better informed you are about sexual health the more in control you are and the more power you have to look after yourself and others.

Cornwall has some great support services out there like Healthy Gay Cornwall, The Hub at Treliske Hospital, Intercom Trust and Kernow Positive Support if you should ever need them.