Why bot if modern teenagers can google the answer to any question, from info about sex, to landing on Mars? They do, but information from the Internet is not always reliable. Online you can stumble upon untruthful, distorted and therefore dangerous information that is based on myths, outdated data, on the simple incompetence of online experts. The Solomia Teen and “I Can!” teams solved this problem by collecting all the information about sex, menstruation and growing up in an interactive and convenient Telegram-bot format.
A gynecologist, a biologist, a psychologist, a nutritionist and an art director have joined forces to create a scientific based and at the same time simple educational product. What can you ask the new Solomia? For example, what to do for the first time; how to refuse sex; how to survive non-reciprocal love; about contraception; about LGBT; about growing up, changes in the body and psyche, and much more.
Masha Leonenko, the ideologist of the project, says that the new Solomia has become much more inclusive and modern: the project team has made considerable efforts to clear the content of sexist stereotypes, conventional beauty and health myths, normative ideas about gender and sexuality. Here is how Masha describes Solomia Teen:
“Correspondence with the bot Solomia is all I wanted to have at the age of 13 to 16: why growing up is so awkward? How to get away from the humiliation by a violent classmate? What to do if you confess your feelings, and you are denied? What if sex does not interest you, but all everyone is talking about is sex? It took us long time to choose current issues and questions. There are even phone numbers of services that you can contact regarding different reasons: from psychological stress to help for victims of violence.”
Dr. Natalia Lelyukh became a consultant on gynecology issues of the project. Looking back at her experience of working with young girls, she argues that restrictions and threats are extremely ineffective in the matter of sex. Solomia Teen, will help parents protect their children from sexually transmitted diseases, unwanted pregnancies, and traumatic relationships. Bot’s knowledge will also help to maintain trust and close relationships in the family.
The program director of the Elena Pinchuk Foundation, Olga Serdyuk, emphasizes that the project is based on acceptance and support, not just anatomical dry facts from:
“In the project “I Can!” we create conditions for mutual support and partnership among girls and women. And Solomia Teen became an attempt to create a universal mentor for teenagers, to place expert experience in a simple, accessible and lively form. We hope to build a bridge of trust between the generations and not only provide direct and honest answers to hundreds of questions, but also support girls in the most difficult time of becoming a personality.”
As a result, Solomia Teen is not only a reliable source of knowledge about the physiology and psychology of growing up, but also a strong support tool. It will help girls and boys to learn to protect their rights and boundaries, to seek help from qualified professionals, to share their secrets with their families and friends. Project copywriter Zhenya Ustinova said:
“I want teenagers to know about sex, what it is: cool, crappy, dangerous, protected, heterosexual, homosexual, diverse. I want them to know exactly what to do in case of rape, sexual harassment - and not only from peers, but also from adults. So that girls are not shy about their desires and their bodies; and that transgender, asexual or intersex children know that they are normal. I would very much like to have at least half of the information that is in this bot in my teens.”
The Solomia Teen project is being implemented in collaboration with the Elena Pinchuk Foundation mentor project “I Can!” and the Coca-Cola Foundation as part of a program to empower women in Ukraine.
Access to the bot Solomia Teens can be found at the link: https://t.me/solomia_bot.
More information about the project and its creators, at http://solomia.today/.