LoVE BiTES is an extremely successful Respectful Relationships Education Program for young people aged 15-17 years.
Community Northern Beaches are the area coordinators for LoVE BiTES on the Northern Beaches.
There are now a number of available facilitators on the Northern Beaches from multiple agencies/organisations who have completed the Love Bites facilitators training.
LoVE BiTES is a Respectful Relationships Education Program for young people aged 15-17 years. It consists of two interactive workshops: one on Relationship Violence, and one on Sex and Relationships, followed by creative workshops and community campaigns. Love Bites is a flexible model with options to use a full day or multi session delivery approach. The program emphasises the importance of a whole-of-school commitment to respectful relationship education.
LoVE BiTES aims to provide young people with a safe environment to examine, discuss and explore respectful relationships. All Love Bites programming takes a strength-based approach and views young people as active participants who are able to make choices for themselves and their relationships when supported with information and opportunity for skill development.
LoVE BiTES education is focused on three critical areas for learning:
- Knowledge: youth-led collaborative learning
- Attitudes: critical thinking and decision-making and
- Behaviours: problem solving and communication skills
The overall aims of the programming are to equip young people with the knowledge needed to have respectful relationships, encourage and develop their skills in critical thinking and assist them in being able to problem solve and communicate effectively. When equipped in these areas, NAPCAN believes that young people can make the right choices for themselves and their relationships that are free from violence and abuse.
LoVE BiTES Junior is a respectful relationships education program that focuses on the development of respectful relationships for 11-14 year olds.
It is a suite of 3 programs which evolved out of the success of Love Bites, a well-established respectful relationship education program designed for young people aged 15-17 years. Since Love Bites was initially implemented in 2003, community feedback from across Australia has consistently included the need for respectful relationship education programs for younger students.
The LoVE BiTES Junior Program consists of 3 programs:
- #friends (Year 7) which covers themes such as communicating mindfully, warning signs of abusive behaviour, power in relationships, responding to concerns as bystanders, seeking help and rights and responsibilities in relation to sharing sexualised images
- Respectful Relationships, Bullying and Gender (Year 8) which covers themes such as respect in relationships, gender roles and stereotypes, gender and relationships, jealousy, sexual harassment and homophobia, challenging harassment, discrimination and gender stereotypes and seeking help
- Relationships, Love and Control (Year 9) which covers themes such as gender expectations and relationships, responding to jealous feelings, love and control, warning signs of a controlling/abusive relationship, supporting friends, seeking help and breaking up with respect.
LoVE BiTES Junior 3 programs are designed to be delivered consecutively as the sessions are deliberately scaffolded to incrementally build young peoples skills.
What are the aims of LoVE BiTES program?
- To provide a safe environment in which young people can talk about Relationship Violence, and Sex and Relationships.
- To promote and model respectful relationships for young people.
- To raise awareness about Relationship Violence its prevalence and forms.
- To bring about attitudinal change in relation to Relationship Violence.
- To engage young people, male and female, on the issues of Relationship Violence in a non-sex-segregated environment with male and female facilitators.
- To challenge gender stereotypes, attitudes, values and social institutions that perpetuate male violence against women.
- To deconstruct the myths that exist in local communities and society generally on Relationship Violence.
- To encourage and educate young people to support their friends.
- To educate young people through a creative and relevant process that builds on their existing knowledge base.
- To introduce young people to local service providers in an informal environment.
- To develop youth-led community campaigns on the issues of Relationship Violence.
What makes LoVE BiTES, LoVE BiTES?
LoVE BiTES is a program that promotes a clear, consistent community approach to the issues of Relationship Violence from workers and teachers in local communities.
LoVE BiTES is run by male and female facilitators working together.
Where appropriate, LoVE BiTES sessions do not segregate male and female students. All sessions aim to be conducted with an equal number of male and female students.
LoVE BiTES uses several presentation styles to actively involve young people, including youth-led small group activities; peer-to-peer learning, and art, music and drama workshops.
LoVE BiTES creates local community campaigns developed and led by young people to prevent Violence against Women.
LoVE BiTES generates local ownership of the program as communities adapt the model to fit with their communities. The program uses local scenarios and local service providers to discuss the issues from the local perspective.
LoVE BiTES promotes an integrated partnership approach to prevention for services working in the areas of Domestic and Family Violence; Sexual Assault, Youth and Child Protection; bringing together the Police, Women Refuges, Sexual Assault Services, Child Protection Services, Youth Services, Family Support Services and Aboriginal Services.
LoVE BiTES has the potential to improve working relationships between service providers through the co-facilitation of this positive prevention program.