Helen’s Caribbean Experience – In Outline

Outline of Caribbean Experience:

1999   – Visited Barbados with friends on holiday in September  (10 days)

– Already had Sexplained Books, written and published in the UK

  • BusinessLink London linked me to the British High Commission (BHC), Barbados

  • BHC arranged 7 meetings during this holiday

    • one of which was with Barbados FPA’s then President, Mr Barton Green
    • he offered Barbados FPA’s support however possible, across the region
  • Met staff at the Health Promotion Dept of Barbados’ Ministry of Health

  • Showed books and explained plans for Sexplained Training for Trainers

  • Gave radio interview via GIS (Govt Information Service)


2000 – Visited Barbados (3 wks)

  • Launched Sexplained Books, supported by British High Commission

  • Public talk during launch at Barbados Community College & answered
    anonymous questions from the audience

  • Book distribution agreed

  • Publicly called for condom vending machines to be made widely available

  • Newspaper interview for The Nation Newspaper

  • Radio interview – Voice of Barbados

  • Spent time writing material for Sexplained Training

  • Met staff from Min of Health’s Health Promotion again

  • Met staff from Min of Health’s HIV Prevention Team

  • Met Dr Carol Jacobs, Barbados AIDS Commission and others in this field

  • Met DeJane Gibbons, then working at Barbados FPA

  • Met Monique Springer UNIFEM


2001 – Visited Barbados to keep up momentum for Sexplained Books (2 wks)

  • Complained at British High Commission about lack of support

  • Met Sanka Price, Editor at The Nation Newspaper and started writing

“The Sexplained Column”, for Better Health (BH) Magazine

  • I have written this monthly column for BH Magazine ever since –
    6 pages/month: topics covered – wide range of contraception and sexual
    health topics

  • Met Carmeta Douglin UNFPA Barbados & Eastern Caribbean

  • Met Ozzie Warwick UNDP Trinidad, topic: Men’s Health Training Programme

  • Radio Interview on “Power Radio” – Port of Spain, Trinidad


2005 – Visited Barbados in April as Special Guest (2 wks)
@ The Nation’s Healthy Lifestyle Extravaganza

  • Gave public talks

  • Promoted Sexplained Books

  • Gave radio / TV interviews – VOB (Voice of Barbados) and CBC TV (Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation)

  • continued networking


2006 – Met Tom Olsen – by chance at Barbados Wildlife Reserve with his family

  • Visited him at UNICEF shortly before leaving Barbados

  • VOB Natalya Peters’ show

  • short trip to St Vincent

— Starlight newspaper interview, St Vincent & The Grenadines

— Visited St Vincent FPA

— continued networking

— Still in touch with contacts made then


Oct 2007

  • Met with Tom Olsen, UNICEF – discussed training resource
  • wrote and developed an classroom training resource for UNICEF Caribbean

  • CBC radio’s Brass Tacks show, with George Griffiths of Barbados FPA

  • Radio / TV and Newspaper interviews, as usual in Barbados


2008 – UNICEF audio training package delivered

  • invited by Carmeta Douglin to speak at UNFPA training event for sports coaches

in Barbados from different islands

  • visited Trinidad to discuss Female Condom promotion

  • Radio / TV and Newspaper interviews, as usual in Barbados

  • continued to network in Barbados

  • UK after this trip – worked on developing The Sexplained Challenge

  • built solid economic argument for taking this to Barbados and across the
    wider Caribbean


2009 – Met British High Commissioner – presented “The Sexplained Challenge” –

  • no UK money available. Think again.

  • Met with DFID (UKAID) – no money!

  • Met with UNIFEM, UNFPA, UNDP and UNICEF – interest shown in competition

  • Local partner needed

  • Barbados FPA agreed to partner

  • Radio / TV and Newspaper interviews, as usual


Apr 2010

  • Spoke to Mr Donville Inniss, Minister of Health

  • explained about The Sexplained Challenge and the numbers of HIV
    diagnoses in the UK, believed to be contracted in Barbados and the other
    Caribbean islands over the last 10 years.

  • Contacted the office of Minister of Youth Affairs, Dr Byer-Suckoo

  • interest shown in supporting “The Sexplained Challenge”

  • met and developed ideas further with Mr Javier Reid, Min of Youth Affairs

  • met with her representatives – no money. Think again.

  • spoke to USAID at CDC in Barbados – interest shown

  • no money, emphasis gone from HIV prevention

  • met HIV Alliance – emphasis of the Challenge doesn’t fit with their plans

  • and the usual, “no money”

  • Met Tom Olsen, UNICEF, Isiuwa Iyahen, UNFPA and Sandra Edwards – UNIFEM

  • Application sent to UNIFEM re “The Sexplained Challenge” for PAC funding

  • Barbados FPA to be forwarding the joint budget element


2011 – no support – no visit – changed direction and got Sexplained Training accredited

  • information placed on an international health site

  • contact from Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, Togo and Manipur for training and
    “The Sexplained Challenge”

  • funding required – think of how – vast numbers of students require training.


Apr 2012

Working holiday, updating Sexplained Books

  • undertaking a PG Dip in Social Innovation in the UK

  • project topic: The Sexplained Challenge

  • continued to network in Barbados

  • continued to work on the updates of my two Sexplained Books

  • Radio / TV and Newspaper interviews, as usual


Nov 2013

  • April – UK launch of Launched “Sexplained One – Sex & Your Health”

  • November – Barbados launch of “Sexplained One – Sex & Your Health”

  • Barbados TV – “Morning Barbados” – CBC TV interview about the new book
    and “The Sexplained Column”, Better Health Magazine, with Dr Adrian Lorde

  • Radio / TV and Newspaper interviews, as usual

  • Met with Carmeta Douglin and Monique Springer at UWIHARP


Sep 2014

  • Launch of “Sexplained Two – For Changing Times” in to Barbados ahead of
  • UK launch in November 2013

  • Barbados TV – “Morning Barbados” – CBC TV interview about the new book
    and “The Sexplained Column”, Better Health Magazine, with Dr Adrian Lorde

  • invited to speak to students aged 12-13 at Lester Vaughan School, Barbados by
    Guidance Counsellors – went to give one talk, stayed to give four!

  • Radio / TV and Newspaper interviews, as usual

  • continue to network

  • Visited Grenada – spoke to class of 14-15 year olds at private school following
    recent social media problems with digital images during this first exploratory visit

  • invited back, any time.

  • books sent to Tanzania – to a Dr contact, who is trying to develop the project

  • bulk order anticipated from both Ministry of Education and
    Ministry of Health – logistics being discussed


Mar 2015

  • visited Barbados during Spring term time to continue supporting the Guidance

Counsellors as requested at the launch event

  • talk to 15-17 year old students, Lester Vaughan School

  • talk to parents at PTA meeting, Lester Vaughan School

  • talk to further 15-16 year old students at Lester Vaughan School

  • talk to students aged 13-17 at Windsor High School, Quarry Road
    (private school)

  • talk to students aged 12-13 at The St Michael School

  • talk to parents at The St Michael School

  • talk to 12-16 year old students at The St Michael School

  • students’ questions gathered on paper from three sessions and disseminated to

Guidance Counsellors for later review

  • Visited St Lucia for the first time – 3 nights

  • spoke to a group of approx. 15 Guidance Counsellors in District 4

  • spoke to senior Public Health Nurse

  • spoke to x3 Health Educators from the St Lucia Ministry of Health

  • sold 8 sets of Sexplained Books on this first trip to St Lucia

  • open invitation to return and speak again, to nurses, school students and
    guidance counsellors, for starters.

  • Agency/Distributorship of both books agreed

  • Met with Juliette Bynoe-Sutherland CEO of Barbados FPA following joint
    appearance on Brass Tacks with Corey Lane, VOB Radio Show – live phone in

  • She requested partnership development to bring “Sexplained Training”
    (accredited) to Barbados, and develop The Sexplained Challenge

  • Discussions about joint application for EU funding


2016 – visited Barbados (short trip) and discussed Men’s Health training and conference involvement with Barbados Family Planning

2017 – Invitation to speak at the first regional Sexual & Reproductive Health Conference – June 2017 – topic: Men’s Health

2017 – 24-25 June – Keynote Speaker at above-named conference – click for further information and copy of Keynote Speech


There have been many, many other meetings over the years – too numerous to mention and too frustrating to recall in many ways.

Funding – self-funded throughout all of these visits except 2005, when travel paid by The Nation.

More about me can be found on www.Sexplained.com

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