The Trent World Action Council put on an incredible event that worked to open up the conversation for students about sexual health. Dirty Drag Bingo was held in the Ceilie on January 25 and February 1. Both nights had a full house of students who were eager to get their BINGO on.
While the event started off a bit hectic because of the mass number of students trying to get a card and a seat, the night quickly shifted to a very relaxed night of BINGO, condoms, and drag performances. The drag queens who hosted the event — Janice from Accounting, Betty Baker, and Dixie Q — were incredible and so full of life that they created a fun atmosphere where students could forget for a night about the impending midterm season. Through their witty jokes and creative performances, the night was full of laughs and good music.
Trent World Action Council, the club responsible for these nights, is a newer club at Trent that was created as a fundraising platform to hosts events to raise money for charities.
February 1’s event raised over $400 for Femme International, a non-profit organization that works to break the ‘menstrual taboo’ that exists in many developing countries by educating young women and girls about their menstrual cycle, as well as providing them with sustainable products to help them manage their cycles. Their work is incredibly important in the effort to not only change a cultural stigma that exist but to also save the lives of girls who do not have the right support to manage their menstrual cycles properly. It is an incredible organization and fit perfectly with the educational theme of the whole night.
Since the goal was to promote healthy and safe sex, TWAC handed out condoms and sexual health pamphlets so that they could start a conversation in a safe environment. Students also had the opportunity to win different adult toys donated by You’re Welcome, an adult store downtown that works heavily with the local community and the LGBTQA2S+ community to promote safe and healthy sex for everyone.
With the stigmas and the taboos surrounding sex that exist in today’s society, it is important to have events such as this in order to start the conversation about healthy and safe sex. Students in university can have the opportunities for casual hook-ups, some for the first time. It is important for there to be education about how to not only be comfortable with the idea of sex in any way shape or form that it may be, but also about how to keep yourself and others safe. Preventing and testing for sexually transmitted infections, practicing safe sex, checking for cancers, and breaking down the taboos that surround menstrual cycles are all important parts of the conversation that need to be started and continued among university students. And a great way to start this talk is to have events such as TWAC’s Dirty Drag Bingo that create a non-judgemental environment during which students ask questions and look for an education.
There are many organizations that helped to put together Dirty Drag Bingo who also work with the Peterborough community to promote safe and healthy sex, and can be reached out to if you are looking to continue the conversation. PARN is an organization that focuses mainly on HIV testing and prevention but also works with LGBTQA2S+ youth and adults as well as promoting sexual health in general. You’re Welcome is also an active member in the Peterborough community for the promotion of safe sex. Finally, Consent at Trent is a good resource on campus for those who are looking to get more information about sexual health.