INTERVIEW: INTRODUCING THE GIRL’S SEXUAL HEALTH BLOG ‘FOOF.’

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Hope Frost and Savannah Mercer have set up the ultimate vagina and sexual health blog. It launched on the 30th of January 2017 and already has hundreds of Instagram followers (@clubfoof). In its first 4 hours it reached 4,200 views. With feminism constantly in the news and girl power at an all-time high – notably the Women’s Marches worldwide – what better time to launch a blog to help girls understand their bodies and discuss all things vagina?

What is foof.? Can you tell me a bit about how the idea was formed and how it turned into reality?

Hope “foof. is a space that we created where girls can share their experiences about vagina-related topics. This is anything from caring for your vagina, UTIs and discharge to sex and sexual health. Since we got sex education at school it has been an idea of ours as we don’t feel like we were properly educated. We realised they really weren’t helpful when there is so much that can go on with your body and vagina. We found discussing things with our girl friends gave us comfort and meant we weren’t freaking out in silence.”

Savannah: “At the time we weren’t in a position to do it because of lack of knowledge and resources so this idea has been in the making for a long time. We have met so many people that would be perfect contributors to foof. over the years and met even more once we were at university and have also both got a lot of writing experience so we feel this was the right time to do it.”

Why ‘foof.’?

Savannah: “It just sounded right. It’s another word for vagina (the only one that didn’t have laddy remarks on urban dictionary) that’s just quick and straight to the point.”

Hope: “‘foof.’ says what we want to say without being intimidating for girls to talk about. It’s also light hearted and it fits with the idea of people enjoying talking about vaginas openly and enjoying the blog.”

We just want young girls to feel less like aliens!

Why do we need foof.?

Hope: “The main reason is we need to remove the stigmas from vagina-related topics. Girls need to be able to discuss what’s happening with their vaginas and bodies so that they don’t feel alone or isolated. The more we talk about sexual health and experiences, the more comfortable people become and girls can begin to enjoy their sexuality without fear of being judged. We want foof. to be a really supportive space for vagina-owners of all ages. We are really lucky to have a supportive group of girlfriends who we can discuss all these issues with. This is what we want to be recreated with foof.; a space for people to discuss vagina things if they don’t have a close group of girlfriends, an older female figure or they just feel a little bit confused.”

Savannah: “We just want young girls to feel less like aliens! foof. isn’t here to scientifically educte – that’s for doctors – but we want girls to read the stories and just thing ‘OMG I’m not an alien’ and there’s nothing wrong with them. It’s a resource for people to educate themselves (like maybe single dads or boyfriends!) or to go back to if they need any reassurance with anything or just to feel like they’re not going through something alone – some loving from a cool group of girls.”

…the stories are coming from a group of real-life human girls who have genuinely lived through all of these experiences.

Why is it important to have so many writers?

Hope: “So that we have as many experiences as possible. Someone may read a post that they find particularly helpful, while someone else might find that they don’t relate to it at all. People experience different things and interpret them in different ways. Having so many writers means that all of these experiences and reactions are accounted for so that everyone can relate to our content, even if it’s just not every post. It also makes foof. more of a balanced discussion, which is what we want it to be. For example on our ‘one night stand’ page there are a few different opinions people have on them. There isn’t one correct way to think about periods, sex or your body so it’s important that everyone can connect, relate and discuss.”

Why have you chosen to make entries on foof. anonymous?

Savannah: “People are more willing to be open. It’s all about being as honest as possible which is hard to do sometimes when your parents, ex-partners or even friends know it’s you writing. The content becomes more honest and open. Until we started writing we weren’t going to have the posts be anonymous, but what is being written is personal and maybe even on the offensive side to some real life people who feature. As long as people know that the stories are coming from a group of real-life human girls who have genuinely lived through all of these experiences then it doesn’t matter if there is a name attached or not.”

Where do you get your art from?

Hope: “We are lucky enough to know some talented girls, both from back home and at uni. I did a post on Instagram asking for some illustrations that would fit the kind of content we wanted to provide and lots of people got back to me. Lots of the foof. writers also contribute to the blog through illustations.”

Savannah: “It’s important for us to have original content – it makes us different from other blogs and it supports other peoples art. It gives them a platform to share their work and we are so pleased we can work with them to help them share their art. In turn, we are also getting cool content for posts.”

 What do you want to do with foof. in the future?

Hope: “Most importantly, we want to keep sharing and educating. We would love improve the look of it and expand it in some way. At the moment though, it’s just started up and we are so happy with how it’s going.”

Savannah: “We love that girls can write funny and relatable stories that can also educate people. foof. is exactly what we wanted it to be and we just plan to keep sharing peoples contributions – whether that’s illustrations or writing.”

You can find foof. @clubfoofat https://foofclub.wordpress.com or on Instagram!