Report from the World Association of Sexual Health (WAS) Congress

I’m just back from what was an absolute Peak Experience in taking a team of people to the World Association for Sexual Health (WAS) 24th Congress in Mexico City. WAS happens every two years and moves around the world. This year 1500 people were attending from some 70 countries.

Pink Therapy is a member of WAS, and we were invited to submit a proposal for a symposium. I proposed, and was accepted for a six presentation (90 minutes) symposium entitled Reflections from the Rainbow. I chose a range of presenters from our faculty, alumni and students, and we had an incredible team.

Pink Therapy’s Symposium Reflections from the Rainbow

The last time it happened you may recall, I was given just a four-minute Brief Communication in Prague. So it was with great delight that I got to programme a full 90 mins and expand my presentation time to 15 minutes.

 I am incredibly grateful to so many generous colleagues, and friends who donated £2000 to my GoFundMe fundraiser to help me be able to afford to participate in this momentous event. Having previously self-funded all other conferences (national and international) it was an absolute joy to have such incredible support.

You can hear a practice recording of my own presentation here. We have put the rest of the presentation’s slides on the private Pink Therapy Group on Facebook. If you are a therapist and haven’t yet joined you’re missing out on some great information. You just need to answer some brief screening questions to join the other 1200 therapists around the world who got there before you!

In addition to the Symposium team, we were joined by two other colleagues connected to Pink Therapy, who presented posters at the conference: Claudio Martinez is currently on our Foundation programme and Tyler Thompson conducted some pioneering research into gay male therapists use of Grindr which I referred to in my own presentation.

Out of the eight of us, we had three full professors, two clinical psychologists, five sexologists, coming from six different countries (Chile, Colombia, Italy, Poland, UK and USA!) Having such a large team meant we weren’t all able to be together for social drinks and meals. Still, we did manage one’ family night’ where almost everyone came to either pre-dinner cocktails or dinner itself).

A picture of some of the symposium presenters relaxing after dinner
The Rainbow team relaxing!

We presented during the Monday afternoon, and by then most of us had been hanging out for a few days. So there was an incredible camaraderie, and we were feeling pretty relaxed. The presentations all ran to time, and everyone presented some really excellent content. I was feeling incredibly proud of everyone’s hard work, and we were mobbed after the panel with people eager to make contact and ask questions.

Proud and happy faces after the panel 
Left to Right: 
Agata Loewe, Dominic Davies, Doug Braun-Harvey, Markie Twist, Miguel Rueda, Antonio Prunas
Proud and happy faces after the panel
Left to Right:
Agata Loewe, Dominic Davies, Doug Braun-Harvey, Markie Twist, Miguel Rueda, Antonio Prunas

While at WAS, Pink Therapy also launched a collaboration between The Harvey Institute and Pink Therapy, which Doug Braun-Harvey has written exclusively for Pink Therapy. This is an online study module on Treating Out of Control Sexual Behaviour based on a sexual health model which he and Michael Vigorito have written about in their best-selling book. The course features over 30 video lectures by Doug, presenting the theory, screening, assessment, and illustrating the whole protocol with a case example plus some guided reading. It also has AASECT CEU’s attached and will be available for purchase and download from 1st at November at https://pinktherapy.org/ocsb/

Dominic and Doug launch their treating out of control sexual behaviour module

Collaboration is at the heart of so much that we do at Pink Therapy, and WAS demonstrated the amazing things we can achieve when we work together.

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