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NHSGGC Hosts African Open Afternoon at Sandyford North

March 20, 2008 3:22 PM

Men, women and young people from the African community are being invited to attend a special open day next Tuesday (March 25th) at NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde’s Sandyford North, the specialist service for sexual, reproductive and emotional healthcare based at Springburn Health Centre.

Running from 12 noon until 2.30pm on Tuesday afternoon, the African Open Event will feature health advice, prizes and a free African lunch. Interpreters fluent in French and Somali will be available. The event will help African people living locally to find out more about how sexual and reproductive healthcare is provided in Glasgow, and to encourage those who may need advice or treatment to come forward.

Colin MacKillop, Sandyford’s Community Access Co-ordinator, said: “All of Sandyford’s services, whether at our city centre base or at any of our six local hubs, are open to everyone. Men, women and young people who need family planning advice, testing or treatment for sexually transmitted infections (STIs) or even just some clear information are all welcome to use our services.

“But to make it easier for everyone to access our care we do have some sessions that are, for example, for men or women only, or some that are aimed only at young people. We find that some people may be embarrassed or uncomfortable attending a sexual health service and this encourages them to come forward and get the help they need.

“So to help spread the word on what Sandyford is all about, we’re holding a special open afternoon for our local African population. We know there’s a large African community in Springburn and the north of the city and we’d love as many people as possible to come along.”

Although Tuesday’s event is intended as an open afternoon to offer information about what Sandyford North can offer, treatment and advice can also be accessed on request. Colin added: “We want Tuesday to be a fun afternoon – we’re going to have a special African lunch and we’re offering prizes. All of that is absolutely free and we’d like everyone to come along and enjoy themselves.

“But the serious side is that a lot of people who are new to this country are not always aware of exactly what Sandyford does. We offer sexual and reproductive healthcare that’s completely free of charge and is totally confidential. By making people aware of what we do, we hope they’ll take advantage of our help and that ultimately their sexual health will improve, which improves the overall health of the community.”

In addition to the events and prizes being offered, those who attend will be able to get family planning advice, pregnancy testing, free condoms, testing for STIs including HIV and gynaecological care. The event is open on a drop-in basis and there is no need to book a place.

In common with all of NHSGGC’s services, any care provided at Sandyford North is culturally sensitive and confidential. Care and support for sexually transmitted infections including HIV, pregnancy testing, and a number of other specialist services are just some of the expert provision available in the heart of Springburn. Sandyford North offers walk-in sexual health services for men, women and young people three days a week and one evening each week.

Dedicated clinics for women, men and young people are available on both a scheduled and drop-in basis. Free condoms and lubricant, contraception, emergency contraception, specialist menopause and gynaecology clinics and a youth priority service are also provided. Translation services can be provided for speakers of a variety of languages if necessary.

Among the range of other services on offer at Sandyford North are advice, counselling, free Internet access and information on all aspects of health in a relaxed and sensitive environment.

Sandyford North is based at Springburn Health Centre, 200 Springburn Way, Glasgow, G21 1TR.

ENDS

For more information contact NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde Communications on 0141 201 4429.

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