Over 500 condoms have been distributed on campus since the beginning of the new semester, according to senior Eyra Dordi.
The Developmental Assets Club has set out six baskets around campus, in the silent study room, library, health office, guidance office and two Living Skills classrooms. The box in the library is the most anonymous so more people have taken condoms from that box, according to Dordi.
Seniors Dordi, Jace Jamason and Claire Marchon created the club to further the mental and physical health of Paly students and the community by making students aware of their options and providing them with the tools necessary to make smart and healthy decisions.
Planned Parenthood donated the first 1,000 condoms and will provide more for $100 per 1,000. The club will have to raise funds to make additional purchases. Dordi wanted to have free protection in convenient locations for the safety of her friends and peers.
“I knew there were a lot of people at Paly having unprotected sex, and there were people I knew getting into trouble because of it, both in terms of unwanted pregnancy and [sexually transmitted diseases],” Dordi said. “We’re not advocating for students to have sex, we’re advocating for those students who choose to be sexually active to be as safe as they can be, and to keep the Paly community healthy.”
According to the 2011 study Developmental Assets: A Profile of Your Youth, a 2009 survey of 1,218 Paly students found that 17 percent were sexually active.
This includes 30 percent of seniors, 21 percent of juniors, 13 percent of sophomores and eight percent of freshmen, split fairly evenly between males and females.
Of that group, 58 percent claimed to always use birth control and 24 percent said that they never use birth control. 30 percent of sexually active boys claimed they never used birth control, while only 16 percent of sexually active girls made the same claim.
Students seem to appreciate the availability of free condoms at school.
“Having an unlimited supply [of condoms] near me all the time is really helpful and an extra incentive to use protection,” an anonymous student said.