(Nicosia, 24/08/22) The first of two Expert Focus Group Meetings with health and education professionals was held on the 17th of August 2022 at the Human Rights House within the scope of the Rainbow Project which is funded by the European Union under the Cypriot Civil Society in Action VII Grant Scheme and implemented by the Queer Cyprus Association.

The “Mapping the Attitudes of Health and Education Professionals towards LGBTI+s” and the “Gap Analysis of Health and Education Curricula” studies, which will be carried out simultaneously over the next five months, were discussed with experts working in the health and education sectors who also shared their opinions on the research studies. These research studies will form the basis for the development of LGBTI+ inclusive education modules. The content of the capacity-building training modules for the professionals working in the health and education sector will be prepared in the light of the needs and gaps emerging from the result of the Mapping and Gap Analyses studies, and will include general LGBTI+ terminology, roots of discrimination and prevention methods, and methods to improve LGBTI+s’ right to access health and education.

Representatives of the Cyprus Turkish Medical Association, the Cyprus Turkish Nurses and Midwives Association, the Cyprus Turkish Psychologists Association, the Universal Patient Rights Association, and the Think Positive Initiative attended the Expert Focus Group Meeting for health professionals. Representatives of the Cyprus Turkish Teachers’ Union, the Cyprus Turkish Secondary Education Teachers’ Union, the Cyprus Turkish Psychological Counselling and Guidance Association, and the SOS Children’s Village attended the Expert Focus Group Meeting for education professionals.

In the first part of the meeting, research expert Prof. Dr. Şenel Hüsnü Raman presented the methodologies and materials to be used in Attitude Mapping study for health and education professionals towards LGBTI+s. Following Prof. Raman’s presentation, an interactive session was held where the participants filled out the draft surveys and provided feedback. After this interactive session, research expert Yasemin Taneri explained the methodology of the Curriculum Gap Analysis for Education, research expert Dr. Fidan Şenova presented the methodology of the Curriculum Gap Analysis for Health Education. At the end of the meeting, the participants had the opportunity to ask questions to the experts and research teams, make suggestions and discuss the work that had been done so far.

The reports that will emerge as a result of these studies will be shared with decision makers, stakeholders and local administrations and will be published on the Queer Cyprus Association’ website. The Attitude Mapping and Gap Analyses studies, which will be conducted simultaneously, are expected to be completed at the beginning of 2023 followed by the commencement of the study for the development of modules.

Queer Cyprus Association: Rainbow Project Team holds 1st Expert Focus Group Meeting with Health and Education Professionals and Research Teams