Anya Manes grew up in the Bay Area, attended Columbia University in New York City, and spent 11 years teaching high-school science at The Dwight-Englewood School (Englewood, NJ), Castilleja (Palo Alto, CA), and Immaculate Conception Academy (San Francisco, CA).
Teacher and Counselor
Anya’s biology curriculum included a sex-ed component every year, when talking about the human reproductive system. Over the years, Anya came to understand where the gaps in her students’ knowledge were and what kinds of relationship skills were lacking. Unfortunately, science class didn’t afford the time to work on boundary-setting skills, how to think critically about media messages, or how to have a safe sex talk with your partner.
Anya enrolled in the Interchange Counseling Institute’s year-long training program. As she gained skills and experience as a counselor, Anya became confident that she could assist adults as well as students with communication skills, shame, and prior trauma.
Addressing critical needs in sex education
One Christmas, after listening to her family’s stories about how awful and inadequate their sex education experiences had been, Anya decided to launch her own support service. She now works with one-on-one coaching clients, runs trainings, workshops, and webinars, and publishes a new article to her blog every two weeks.
Anya’s goal is to help families teach their kids the skills they need to have safe and healthy sexual relationships, from the start.