UCL have launched and obtained funding for 1 year to develop the UK's first national menopause education and support programme. The project is being led by Dr Shema Tariq (Institute for Global Health), Professor Joyce Harper (Institute for Women's Health), and Dr Nicky Keay (Division of Medicine).
To improve menopause awareness, education and support, for everyone.
This will be a non-commercial programme of holistic support and education about menopause, co-designed with stakeholders and the public. The content of the programme will be evidence-based. There is a strong emphasis on diversity, inclusion and accessibility. The programme explicitly recognises that people already have skills, resources and resilience to manage their lives through menopause, and takes a strengths-based approach.
Overview of the project
The UK National Menopause Education and Support Programme will be aimed at the public and delivered face-to-face in community settings and online by trained facilitators. Courses will be able to be taken by individuals, or commissioned by employers.
Our aim is to empower people with menopause information and build supportive communities, by providing a range of courses and support tailored to specific groups.
We are working with some of the UK’s leading organisations in reproductive and post-reproductive health. Project partners include Wellbeing of Women and the Sophia Forum. The British Menopause Society and the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists are supporting the project.
We have established a diverse and multidisciplinary advisory board to provide guidance and support during the first year of the project. Members of the advisory board include: Karen Arthur, Geeta Kumar, Rachel Lankester, Janet Lindsay, Annice Mukherjee, Ann O'Neill, Alice Smellie, Sophie Strachan, Vikram Talaulikar, and Helen Tomlinson.
We are running two workshops in year 1, the first of which took place on 13th October, with over 50 key stakeholders sharing their views on the programme. We are now embarking on focus groups with members of the public, also focusing on specific populations such as those experiencing early menopause, those from racially and/or sexually minoritised communities, trans and non-binary people, people with neurodiversity, people with disabilities and people with long term conditions. During this first year, working groups will be established to finalise topics to be covered by the programme.
By the end of Year one we will have applied for further research funding to develop content, pilot, evaluate, and trial this ambitious and innovative programme.
Workshop attendees with Prof Joyce Harper.
The project team, Dr Shema Tariq, Dr Nicky Keay, Prof Joyce Harper and Polly Van Alstyne.
Professor Joyce Harper, The International Reproductive Health Education Collaboration chaired by Professor Harper, who are developing an educational resource for teachers and information leaflets for the public.
Professor Joyce Harper, podcast – Why didn’t anyone tell me this? Available on all podcast channels and www.joyceharper.com/podcasts
Book – Your Fertile Years, by Joyce Harper, published by Sheldon Press, 2021.