One of the programs we are most proud of at UUCC is the Our Whole Lives (OWL) curriculum, the comprehensive UU sexuality education curriculum that provides thorough information about healthy relationships and sexuality to young UUs (as well as other young people who wish to participate). OWL seeks to provide accurate, developmentally appropriate information that empowers young people to make decisions that are right for them about sexuality and relationships. OWL is body positive, sex positive, and LGBTQIA affirming. We currently offer Junior High and High School OWL in alternating years.
This weekend (January 13-15), people will be coming from all over the country to participate in a training to become certified to teach the OWL curriculum. We are very excited to be hosting this training, and to have eight of our church members getting certified. We are very grateful to the numerous church members who have supported this training by providing meals and hosting participants in their homes during their time in Columbia.
This training is our first step in revamping and expanding our OWL program. We have to decided to take a one-year hiatus in our usual schedule so that we have time to begin planning with our new team of OWL teachers. That means high school OWL will be offered again beginning in January of 2019, and junior high OWL in January of 2020.
We are also planning to begin offering OWL for younger ages. A team is getting certified to teach a Kingergarten-1st grade OWL curriculum, and also a 4th-6th grade OWL curriculum. I feel more than ever the importance of introducing such essential topics as consent and boundaries and body positivity as early as possible and I can’t wait to get started. After the training, the Elementary OWL Team will begin making plans of when we will offer it. Stay tuned for announcements about that in the year ahead.
I am so proud to be part of a faith tradition that believes in healthy sexual expression, in an empowered relationship to our own bodies, and in deep care and consent in our relationship with others. I look forward to continuing to build this program with all of you, and in sharing these values with our children.