Dear Parents/Guardians of Members of the 1st Lower Morden Scout Group,
You will all be aware of the Covid-19 (also known as Coronavirus) Global pandemic we are facing which is now on our doorstep in the U.K.
At the time of writing this message it is Thursday 12 March 2020, and the Cobra meeting assessing the spread of Covid-19 has just announced the escalation of the National Status to one of Delay.
The infection rate and required approach is an evolving situation. Therefore:
The Policy that we have committed to as a Scout Group is to follow and instigate the guidance being regularly provided to us by The Scout Association, which essentially states that we should follow the latest Guidance and Policy of the Government and Public Health England (PHE).
We encourage all Parents/Guardians to regularly find and familiarise themselves with the latest advice and instruction online at gov.uk and follow the Coronavirus (Covid-19) – What you need to do link, appearing on the Home page. Please read the contents fully.
We also encourage all Parents/Guardians to regularly find and familiarise themselves with the information contained on the page Coronavirus (Covid-19) – What you need to do to the Publication, COVID-19: guidance for educational settings. Please read the contents fully.
We require all Parents/Guardians/Youth Members and Adult Leaders and Helpers to comply with the latest Government Policy regarding Covid-19.
WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?
FREEDOM OF CHOICE:
- You may decide to withdraw your child from attending Scouting with us, given the developing scenario, simply as a personal choice. If you do, you must immediately email myself to advise. This may cause a temporary reduction in numbers attending, resulting in it being impractical to continue to keep that Section or the Group operating on a weekly basis. (See HOW WE WILL ADVISE YOU below.)
- Adult Leaders and Helpers are equally being given the freedom of choice regarding their attendance in undertaking activities with us, given the developing scenario. This may cause a staffing shortage, resulting in it being impractical to continue to keep that Section or the Group operating on a weekly basis. (See HOW WE WILL ADVISE YOU below.)
ILLNESS, ISOLATION AND HOW TO ADVISE US
- If a Youth Member is generally unwell and is not demonstrating Covid-19 related symptoms, and will not be attending, it is essential that you immediately email me.
- If a Youth Member demonstrates any of the key symptoms requiring isolation, as detailed on gov.uk, or has been placed into enforced isolation as a result of exposure to Covid-19, it is essential that you immediately email me detailing the situation, including any known contacts associated with attendance at the Scout Group and the anticipated dates for Isolation.
HYGIENE AND VIRUS PRECAUTIONS
- We require all those attending a weekly Meeting indoors to wash their hands with soap and water when they arrive and before they leave. They will also do so before eating or preparing any food or snacks during the Meeting and immediately after any potential hazards for contamination are identified.
- We require all those attending a weekly Meeting outdoors to wash their hands with soap and water before they travel to the Meeting and when they arrive home. They will also do so before eating or preparing any food or snacks during the Meeting and immediately after any potential hazards for contamination are identified.
- We require Parents/Guardians to educate their Youth Member on the latest advice, especially regarding coughs, sneezes, interactions with others, washing hands, and minimising risks by keeping hands away from mouths and eyes where possible and all required self-care practise from gov.uk regarding Covid-19. Make sure that your Youth Member knows to speak with a Leader or Helper if they feel ill during a Meeting or Scouting activity.
- The Government currently advises against the use of masks and so they will not be worn.
- A bin will be provided for any tissues, and soap and water are available in the washrooms. Where possible (supplies are short in stores atm) please provide your child with disposable tissues.
CHANGES TO OUR ACTIVITIES
We may need to cancel or postpone our activities as this evolves and as Guidance and Policy changes – sometimes with short notice. You may find that Sections choose to increasingly hold their Meetings outdoors or even adapt to offer distance-learning Scouting activities. These are just examples of alternatives to Meeting at the Hall. Each of these choices may have implications as we have various restrictions on ratios of adults to Youth Members for some Sections and Activity policies and procedures we all have to comply with. There may even be no activity for a period of time.
At the moment, the District St. George’s Day Parade on 26th April is still going ahead. There is a Pack Holiday for the Cubs in May and the Scout’s trip abroad in the summer holidays – as it stands at the moment, both are going ahead.
Details regarding plans, amendments or cancellations to Section-related activities will come from your child’s Section Leaders or myself.
Details regarding plans, amendments or cancellations for Group events or changes to our Group Policy for Covid-19 will come from me.
HOW WE WILL ADVISE YOU
We will update our Facebook Page and website accordingly. Emails will also be sent.
ANY QUESTIONS OR CONCERNS
Please contact me directly.
Thank you for your patience, understanding and cooperation at this difficult and uncertain time.
Yours In Scouting
Group Scout Leader, 1st Lower Morden