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COVID-19 Guidelines

 

Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) – Update February 8, 2021 1:00 p.m (last update posted January 25, 2021)

Girl Scouts of the USA and Girl Scouts of Citrus are providing the COVID-19 safety and health guidelines for our volunteers, recognizing that the timing of resuming in person troop meetings, activities and Programs will change as the risk of exposure changes and also vary from state to state and even from county to county in certain regions. This guidance is intended to be used for councils and volunteers in conjunction with Safety Activity Checkpoints and according to each council’s individual state and local COVID-19 circumstances which change in response to risk factors.

 

This guidance is being provided as of the February 1st, 2021. It is important that you continue to monitor local, state and federal guidelines and the other resources indicated below such as the Center for Disease Control (CDC). GSUSA and Girl Scouts of Citrus Council may, but is not obligated to, modify its guidance, from time to time, in its sole discretion.

 

COVID-19 is an extremely contagious virus that spreads easily in the community. Each troop/family should weigh their participation based on their own as well as their family members health concerns. As with any social activity, participation in Girl Scouts could present the risk of contracting COVID-19. While Girl Scouts of Citrus takes every safety and preventative precaution, Girl Scouts of Citrus can in no way warrant or be held responsible that COVID-19 infection will not occur through participation in Girl Scout activities.

 

The COVID-19 pandemic continues to change as infection rates rise and fall in different areas. There may be regional differences or developments since this guidance was published. Continue to follow local and national directives. Discuss plans with families.

 

As we begin to phase into certain in person activities, please keep in mind that these guidelines can change daily based on information from the CDC, GSUSA, and other governing bodies. Citrus Council’s website will have the most current information.

 

All troops should monitor local restrictions and refer to the GSC Website for the most up-to-date status on council operations. Restrictions vary greatly from county to county, and even from town to town and can frequently change.

 

New Processes Effective February 1st, 2021. Updated forms will be uploaded to the Girl Scouts of Citrus Council website under the forms section. These forms will all have the 2/1/2021 date and will be the only forms approved moving forward.

In-Person Troop Meetings

Meeting in Person - Troop Meetings

 

While virtual is still the preferred method of engaging in troop activities for now. Troops have been able to meet in person. All troops that are currently meeting or that are going to begin meeting in person, at a public indoor/outdoor or residential outdoor location, will need to do the following:

 

  1. Complete a Meeting Request Packet which includes the following forms that are all dated 2/1/2021: (TAR, Roster, Acknowledgement Form) and submit it to the Safety Coordinator in each community for approval.
  2. Additionally, if you are meeting at an outdoor residential location you will also need to complete the Residential Agreement Form and submit that with your Meeting Request Packet.
  3. If you have already been meeting and received an approval from Council prior to February 1st, 2021, you do not have to submit new paperwork you would just need to forward the Safety Coordinator your Council approved packet no later than February 28th, 2021.

Always remember that all troops must follow and adhere to all current COVID-19 safety and health guidelines as well as communicate the requirements to the other adult volunteers and parents. They must utilize all social distancing practices and follow all preventative guidance.  This would include but is not limited to: everyone wearing a mask at all time that completed covers their mouth and nose, cleaning and sanitizing of all space and supplies before and after use, 6 feet of social distance is always practiced, pre-screening form and temperature checks each time.

Troops must also follow all guidelines found in Safety Activity Checkpoints and Volunteer Essentials.

All paperwork that is collected for troop meetings must be kept on file for at least the entire school year. This includes, but is not limited to: meeting rosters for each meeting, pre-screening forms, adult certifications, and any other information such as meeting schedules, etc.

 

Troop Meeting Size.

The current suggested maximum is no more than fourteen people (twelve girls and two unrelated adult volunteers) This will also vary on the ratio for the grade level of the troop. You may need to adjust the girl- adult ratio for younger girls. Check in Safety Activity Checkpoints for more information.

 

If Your Troop Exceeds 14 People Total

While virtual is still the preferred method of engaging in troop activities for now. Troops that have 14 or more total participants should always be sure to gather up in smaller groups—such as age-level groups, patrols, or groups of girls with a particular badge that they would like to work on.

Always confirm the number of people that are permitted and to allow for proper girl-to-adult ratios.

Be sure to have smaller groups at opposite ends of the space, with a minimum of 50’ between groups, while still practicing social distancing within that group.

You can also meet at two different times or could meet at one or more locations.

Follow all guidelines listed above and when you submit your TAR be sure to include a detailed plan of the amount of people and the layout. As well as the safety guidelines in place.

Troop Meeting Space

In Person Troop Meeting Spaces

 

As of  February 1, 2021 Troops can meet in residential or public outdoor spaces providing there is adequate room for social distancing. Troops may now also meet at public indoor spaces where there must be enough room for social distancing.  Volunteers should get advance permission from the property owner or the jurisdiction that provides the location.

 

Remember that:

·      Meetings may not be held in fitness centers or gyms, where a greater risk for contracting the virus may exist. Schools or churches may not permit outside groups on premises, so always check and confirm ahead of time.

·      GSUSA suggests no meetings in the home, out of concern that there would be greater risk of exposure to other family members. In certain exceptional situations and due to the current COVID-19 risk.

Always remember that all troops must follow and adhere to all current COVID-19 safety and health guidelines as well as communicate the requirements to the other adult volunteers and parents. They must utilize all social distancing practices and follow all preventative guidance.

This would include but is not limited to: everyone wearing a mask at all time that completed covers their mouth and nose, cleaning and sanitizing of all space and supplies before and after use, 6 feet of social distance is always practiced, pre-screening form and temperature checks each time. These steps in addition to all the guidelines and forms must be adhered to.

Please refer to In Person Meeting Guidelines for additional instructions and guidelines

 

Public Spaces

When using any public spaces always make sure that the grounds and location are completely safe for children.

Please be sure to:

  • Contact the facility ahead of time and ask:
  • Is the space cleaned, and touch surfaces (i.e., tabletops, light switches, chairs, etc.) sanitized, at least daily?
  • Who else uses the space (how often, what size is the group)? Is the space cleaned between groups?
  • What type of faucets / soap dispensers are available in the restroom (sensory or manual)?

 Then, be sure to implement additional practices, such as:

  • If you will arrive after another user group, plan to bring sanitizing wipes and/or spray to get the space ready for your troop.
  • If faucets are manual, take some time to show girls how to shut them off with a paper towel. Use paper towels for doorknobs whenever possible.
  • Leaders should have supplies on hand to ensure areas are clean and sanitized for girls and adults, such as: wipes, sanitizing spray, paper towels, sanitizer, and disposable masks
  • Be sure to implement a cleaning/sanitizing regime for bathroom use. Such as an adult is to clean high touch surfaces after use, ensure girls are correctly washing hands and sanitizing etc.

 

Residential Outdoor Spaces

When using any outdoor residential spaces always make sure that the grounds and location are completely safe for children.

Please be sure to:

  • The home must be the home of registered, background checked, council approved Volunteer.
  • Girls may not meet in a home where a registered sex offender lives.
  • Some councils may require membership and background checks for all adults living in the home.
  • The troop needs to be able to focus without disruptions from other household members.
  • Make sure that pools are fenced or otherwise safely sectioned off.
  • Any equipment, tools or recreational apparatus that is deemed unsafe for girls such as outdoor trampolines should all be secured, and girls are not able to access them.
  • All pets and animals should be kept in a place that is separate from the meeting space.
  • Homeowners should consider any personal homeowner insurance implications. The Homeowner should ask their Homeowner’s insurance carrier if there are any insurance exclusions regarding holding troop meetings at the home, in the event an accident or injury occurs.
  • Council staff should confirm with their council’s insurance broker that a Girl Scout volunteer homeowner would be covered under the council’s General Liability insurance carrier, in the event an accident or injury occurs during a Girl Scout meeting at the home.
  • Ensure that both the troop leader and co-leader can see girls and always monitor their whereabouts.
  • Maintain the use of the buddy system for errands or bathroom breaks.
  • If the property is large, ensure that the meetings space is kept distinctly separate from non-members.
  • Weapons must be completely out of view and stored in a locked space.
  • Medication, dangerous cleaning products, or any poisonous substance must be stored in a secure space out of sight, preferably locked.
  • Ensure that the Hygiene and Risk Mitigation and all other guidance in this document are followed. (this is a COVID-19 specific precaution)

 

Day Activities

Day Activities

All Girl Scout members who wish to participate in any general day activities that are currently approved (see Day Activities below), will need to complete the following:

1.    Verify that any activity you are planning with your girls is allowed for their grade level, as well as an activity that is currently permitted. You can review these guidelines be referring to:

  • Safety Activity Checkpoints 
  • Approved Vendor Page 
  • Current Covid Guidelines
  • Volunteer Essentials 

2.    Complete an Activity Request Packet which includes the following forms that are all dated 2/1/2021: (TAR, Roster, Acknowledgement Form) and submit it to the Safety Coordinator in your community for approval, a minimum of 2 weeks prior to the event date

If the activity is designated as a High-Risk Activity, it must be submitted to the Safety Coordinator a minimum of 3 weeks prior to the event date, once they approve it they will submit it to Girl Scouts of Citrus for final approval. (High Risk Activities are indicated on the vendor list) 

3.    Always remember that even though Girl Scouts of Citrus has vetted and approved these activities and/or vendors, it is still the responsibility of the troop leaders, parents, and other volunteers to ensure everyone is adhering to all current Girl Scouts of Citrus COVID-19 safety and health guidelines as well as the guidelines of the location.

This would include but is not limited to:

  • Everyone is always wearing a mask properly, ensuring that nose and mouth are always covered.
  • Washing hands and using sanitizer frequently
  • Always practice social distancing
  • Temperatures are checked and pre-screening forms are completed.

All paperwork that is collected for troop activities must be kept on file for a minimum of the entire Girl Scout year. This includes, but is not limited to: meeting rosters for each meeting, pre-screening forms, adult certifications, and any other information such as meeting schedules, etc.

Types of Activities that are Permitted

The following general activities are permitted at this time and do not require any additional Council Risk Approval you would only need to submit your packet to the Safety Coordinator.

  • Council Sponsored Programs
  • Ceremonies
  • Higher Award/Community Service Projects (Please note that you may need additional approval for projects from the designated Council Staff)
  • Product Rally’s
  • Community Events, Day Only Camporees, Thinking Day, etc.
  • Programs/badges hosted by troops/older girls in the outdoors
  • Recruitment table events
  • General activities and badge programs offered by local/state/national parks, environmental centers, etc.
  • Specific Indoor/Outdoor Programs offered by community partners that have been reviewed and vetted for their Covid protocols.
  • Please refer to the vendor list under the Approved Activity/Vendor list tab below.
Community/Multi Troop Events

Community Events/Multi -Troop Events – Day Only

These guidelines are for all Girl Scout Activities that are on a larger scale, such as an event that has more than one troop or with one or more communities.  To host these types of activities, communities/multi- troops will need to do the following:

 

1.    Verify that any activity you are planning with your girls is allowed for their grade level, as well as an activity that is currently permitted. You can review these guidelines be referring to:

  • Safety Activity Checkpoints
  • Approved Vendor Page 
  • Current Covid Guidelines
  • Volunteer Essentials 

 

2.    Complete the Community/Multi Troop Activity Request Packet which includes the following forms that are all dated 2/1/2021: (CAR, Roster, Guidelines, Acknowledgement Form) and submit it to Customer Care at customercare@citrus-g.org for approval, a minimum of 4 weeks prior to the event date.

 

3.    Always remember that even though Girl Scouts of Citrus has vetted and approved these activities and/or vendors, it is still the responsibility of the troop leaders, parents, and other volunteers to ensure everyone is adhering to all current Girl Scouts of Citrus COVID-19 safety and health guidelines as well as the guidelines of the location.

 

This would include but is not limited to:

  • Everyone is always wearing a mask properly, ensuring that nose and mouth are always covered.
  • Washing hands and using sanitizer frequently
  • Always practice social distancing
  • Temperatures are checked and pre-screening forms are completed.

All paperwork that is collected for all activities must be kept on file for a minimum of the entire Girl Scout year. This includes, but is not limited to: meeting rosters for each meeting, pre-screening forms, adult certifications, and any other information such as meeting schedules, etc.

Types of Activities that are Permitted

The following general activities are permitted at this time and do not require any additional Council Risk Approval you would only need to submit your packet to the Safety Coordinator.

  • Council Sponsored Programs
  • Ceremonies
  • Higher Award/Community Service Projects (Please note that you may need additional approval for projects from the designated Council Staff)
  • Product Rally’s
  • Community Events, Day Only Camporees, Thinking Day, etc.
  • Programs/badges hosted by troops/older girls in the outdoors
  • Recruitment table events
  • General activities and badge programs offered by local/state/national parks, environmental centers, etc.
  • Specific Indoor/Outdoor Programs offered by community partners that have been reviewed and vetted for their Covid protocols.
  • Please refer to the vendor list under the Approved Activity/Vendor list tab below.
Council Sponsored Events

Council Sponsored Events

For all Council Sponsored/Hosted Events (events that you register for through Girl Scouts of Citrus Website not individual registrations through a vendor) troops would need to complete the following:

1.    Complete an Activity Request Packet which includes the following forms that are all dated 2/1/2021: (TAR, Roster, Acknowledgement Form) and submit it to the Safety Coordinator in your community for approval, a minimum of 2 weeks prior to the event date

2.    Always remember that even though the event is sponsored/hosted by Girl Scouts of Citrus, it is still the responsibility of the troop leaders, parents, and other volunteers to ensure everyone is adhering to all current Girl Scouts of Citrus COVID-19 safety and health guidelines as well as the guidelines of the location.

3.    This would include but is not limited to:

  • Everyone is always wearing a mask properly, ensuring that nose and mouth are always covered.
  • Washing hands and using sanitizer frequently
  • Always practice social distancing
  • Temperatures are checked and pre-screening forms are completed.

4.    All paperwork that is collected for troop activities must be kept on file for a minimum of the entire Girl Scout year. This includes, but is not limited to: meeting rosters for each meeting, pre-screening forms, adult certifications, and any other information such as meeting schedules, etc.

Approved Activity/Vendor List

The vendor/activity list will be updated as new vendors are vetted and approved. What is vetted and approved? This is when the vendor has been visited by a designated staff person and all activities, guidelines and polices are reviewed. This includes, but is not limited to compliance with all safety, health, governing bodies, GSC, GSUSA, local and state guidelines regarding all activities, COVID -19 protocols, current certifications, program delivery, specific training, emergency procedures and compliance with liability insurance minimums. 

 

Approved Activity/Vendor List

 

Hygiene, Covid-19 Risk Mitigation, CPR/First Aid

Follow the resources developed by credible public health sources such as CDC or your local public health department. Share these with girls and volunteers and ensure that they are practiced during meetings and activities. Place signs in the meeting or activity space to remind girls and volunteers to engage in everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Signs and/or posted guidelines should include:

·       All participants, adults and children must complete a pre-screening survey prior to each event, meeting, or activity. This can be found under Covid Forms at www.citrus-gs.org 

·       Volunteers, girls, and parents should be reminded to make sure temperatures are taken prior to group interaction to confirm the individual is not running a fever and temperature is a normal 98.6 degrees.

·       Members with fever or temperature higher than 100.4 should not attend any in person activities or meetings.

·       If an adult or girl has a temperature or other symptoms upon arrival to the meeting they will be asked to leave.

·       Please do not leave your Girl Scout until her temperature has been checked.

·       Stay home if you are sick.

·       Cough and sneeze into a tissue, throw the tissue in the trash, and wash or sanitize your hands.

·       Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If soap and water are not available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.

·       Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth. Wash hands if you do touch.

Personal Contact.

 

·       Hugs, handshakes, “high-fives,” and even activities and traditions like the friendship circles, flag ceremony or squeeze can transmit COVID-19 from person-to-person.

·       Refrain from these gestures for the time being. Create a safe way for girls and volunteers to greet and end meetings instead (like coming up with you own meeting cheer.)

·       Please ensure that if you are singing songs or reciting The Pledge, Promise or Law everyone is wearing a mask and practicing social distancing to avoid the risk of droplet spread.

Pre-screening and Symptoms Check. Prior to in-person troop meetings and activities, all participants should be screened to ensure:

 

·       they are healthy and that they have not experienced symptoms that are associated with COVID-19 in the previous 72 hours;

·       that they have not knowingly been in contact with someone that has exhibited symptoms or has been confirmed positive with COVID-19 or a person waiting to see if they are positive; and

·       that they have not been to high-risk geographical regions particularly those regions that require a 14-day or otherwise specific quarantine period.

 

Note: The CDC defines “close contact” as follows:

 

·       You were within 6 feet of someone who has COVID-19 for a total of 15 minutes or more

·       You provided care at home to someone who is sick with COVID-19

·       You had direct physical contact with the person (hugged or kissed them)

·       You shared eating or drinking utensils

·       They sneezed, coughed, or somehow got respiratory droplets on you

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

First Aid / CPR Training. Always keep skills up to date for any emergency and always have at least one person per troop/group currently certified in CPR/First Aid (First Aider). Due to the current COVID -19 situation, the CPR/First Aid online training restriction has been temporarily lifted for the time period that in-person training is not available. Volunteers can receive on-line training only with a council approved training provider. Once it is safe, with Council approval all volunteers can resume in-person training and skills assessment. Current approved online vendors are: American Red Cross, American Heart Association, National Safety Council, American Safety and Health Institute, EMP America and Medic. In addition, requests can be submitted to use alternative companies that are certified through these governing bodies. These requests should be submitted to Customer Care at customercare@citrus-gs.org a minimum of one month prior to scheduling a training to allow enough time for the vetting process. 

 

When do you need First Aid/CPR Training?  You would need a First Aider with your troop/group, when participating in troop meetings in a public location as well as when participating in any /all  of the following activities, day trips, high adventure activities, camping, overnights, and trips. Troops that meet at a residence (outdoors) that is considered their primary meeting location does not require a CPR/First Aid trained adult.

 

Transportation (carpooling). It is imperative to take all safety precautions when girls are travelling in motor vehicles. If possible, girls from different households should not carpool. Coronavirus transmission risk is high when people are in close proximity, less than six feet apart. The risk increases when people are in a closed in area or indoors for longer than 10 minutes. When transporting girls, always space out the girls to avoid crowding, have girls wear a mask and keep the windows partially open to provide ventilation. Make sure parents are aware ahead of time if girls will be in a car together. Always, for every in-person event, meeting, or transportation arrangement, conduct the pre-screening process to ensure that coronavirus does not touch Girl Scout gatherings.

 

Individual parent drop-offs and pick-ups are also an option. Public transportation should be avoided and not encouraged.

 

Remember:

 

·       Girls and adults should wear masks when inside of a motor vehicle

·       Keep car window opened, at least partially, to circulate fresh air.

·       Consider the personal situation of your girls:

o   Do they live with an immune compromised person that they can put at risk? If so, perhaps make other accommodations for her with her parents.

·       Prescreen all passengers

o   Have the families been isolating, and free from contagion? If so, the troop may essentially be a safe bubble.

o   Always complete a pre -screening form and take temperatures before travel.

Again, sustained contact within less than six (6) feet for longer than ten (10) minutes within an enclosed   area creates high risk for virus transmission, so be very careful with carpool decisions.

Individual parents drop off and pick up their own girls from meetings. Carpooling and public transportation should be avoided, where possible, to maintain social distancing.

 

Travel and Overnights:

 

At this time overnight activities and travel trips (overnight) are not permitted, this includes but is not limited to:

o   Camping

o   Camporees

o   Hotels

o   Lock in’s

o   Sleepovers

First Aid/Cleaning Supplies:

 

·       Troop first aid supplies should include COVID-19 prevention items including:

·       hand sanitizer (at least 60% alcohol)

·       disposable facemasks

·       disinfectants, wipes, paper towels etc.

·       Tissues, gloves and trash bags

·       Trash baskets or bags should be supplied for meeting and activity spaces, if not already available. Make sure that the trash baskets (or bags) are easily accessible for girls.

·       Disposable or no-contact thermometers may be added to supplies if available and not cost-prohibitive, however, parents should be checking temperatures and allowing their girl(s) to join group activities only when temperatures are normal.

·       Supply of pre-screening forms and temperature log

 

Disinfectants and Disinfecting:

 

Routinely clean and disinfect surfaces and objects that are frequently touched (i.e., table tops, markers, scissors, etc.). Use a household disinfectant or see the EPA’s list of effective cleaners approved for use against COVID-19. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for all cleaning and disinfection products (e.g., concentration, application method and contact time, etc.).

Household bleach is effective against COVID-19 for up to 24 hours when properly diluted. To prepare a bleach solution, mix:

·       5 tablespoons (1/3rd cup) bleach per gallon of water or

·       4 teaspoons bleach per quart of water

 

See the CDC’s website for more on cleaning and disinfecting community facilities.

 

Face Coverings:

 

Use cloth face coverings as feasible. Note that some girls or volunteers may not be able to wear masks, due to medical conditions such as asthma. Face coverings are essential in times when proper social distancing is difficult.

 

Wearing face coverings (masks) is not only to protect you, but also to protect others. Face coverings are a civic responsibility and a sign of caring for the community. Girls can bring their own face coverings, but you should also have disposable masks on hand for those who need them. Volunteers can teach girls how to handle their face coverings so that they are effective. Be sure that when anyone is wearing a mask, they keep it on at all times as well as keeping it over their nose

 

 

Cloth face coverings should not be placed on:

·       Children younger than 2 years old

·       Anyone who has trouble breathing

·       Anyone who is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the cloth face covering without assistance

o   Please note that some adults/children may not be able to wear a mask due to a medical condition.

o   Troops should inform families so they are aware if there is a member who will participate without wearing a mask. If unable to wear face coverings due to medical conditions, you must always maintain a minimum of 6 feet away from anyone else at all times and provide any documentation when possible.

 

Reporting and communicating a positive COVID-19 test. In the event of a COVID-19 positive test result, contact the parents or troop members   while maintaining privacy of the individual. The troop leader will notify parents and others about a positive test result and that the tester’s identity is confidential. Remember that girl and volunteer health information is private and strictly confidential and should be only shared on a need-to-know basis with a council staff member.

·       Confirming and tracing the positive tester

·       Contacting the parents of anyone who may have been exposed (or other volunteers)

·       Notifying a facility or homeowner where a troop has met

 

 

Record Retention. Generally, with respect to paper pre-screening forms that are collected manually, the forms should be saved for the duration of the membership year. If the forms are collected at the very end of the membership year, they should be retained for approximately 3 months.

 

Keep in mind that pre-screening forms should be treated just like any other personal or medical forms that are collected for Girl Scout troops, meetings and activities. Only the designated staff or volunteers should have access to this information. Forms should always be stored in a secure box, preferably kept in a location that is not accessible by others

FDA Warnings

The FDA has advised consumers not to use certain hand sanitizers due to unsafe ingredients. The CDC provides an updated list of products that should never be used. Be sure to check FDA updates on hand sanitizers consumers should not use and stay away from products deemed unsafe.

 

Food, Dining and Snacks. Be careful when handling and serving food and have girls be careful with each other when eating. Safety recommendations for food, dining and snacks include:

·       Encourage girls to bring their own foods to eat (bag lunch or dinner)

·       Encourage girls not to share their food after having touched it, such as a bag of chips.

·       Individually wrapped items are recommended.

·       If providing snacks, especially if unwrapped, have one person, wearing gloves, hand out items to each person, such as with cupcakes or cookies.

·       Use a serving spoon or scoop rather than reaching into a bag or bowl of snacks.

·       Use a buffet line only if staffed with a safely protected server with mask and gloves.

·       Avoid “serve yourself” buffets.

·       Public dining only as permitted in your local jurisdiction.

·       If serving family style, have one person, wearing clean gloves, serve everyone on clean plates

·       Use disposable plates, forks, napkins, etc. when possible.

·       Encourage girls to bring foods they can easily cook themselves (a prepacked foil pack) or hotdog for outdoor cooking.

·       Ensure everyone handling food, those serving, girls, adults, wash hands (even if they will be wearing gloves) prior to any food prep or meals, following CDC handwashing guidelines.

·       If sharing outdoor cooking utensils (roasting forks), they should be washed and sanitized between each use or bring enough utensils so that each person gets their own.

·       Continue recommendation for 6 foot spacing during meals.

Staying Safe and Girl Scout Property Restrictions

Girl Scouts of Citrus (GSC) will be implementing a phased reopening of its business offices with safety protocols in place. In order to adequately provide a safe environment for staff and visitors, the offices are now open to a limited number of staff members. The offices will remain closed to visitors at this time. While everyone would prefer to get back to normal as soon as possible, we must put the safety of our girls, volunteers and staff first.

The rise in reported COVID cases across the country emphasizes the importance of continuing to follow CDC guideline for social distancing.  

 

Customer Care and Council Shop

The Citrus council Shop is now open for in-person shopping by appointment – appointments will be scheduled for one hour and only three customers will be allowed at a time.

  • Masks are required for everyone entering the shop.
  • Safe social distancing will be enforced.
  • The shop staff will disinfect and clean the stations after each hour session.

The shop will continue to offer personal virtual shopping experiences with a retail expert. It's the next best thing to being at the shop in person!

  • Just fill out the appointment request which you can find here. One of our staff members will reach out and coordinate your very own virtual shopping experience.
  • Personal Shopper Bookings only offered on Wednesdays from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
  • Orders can still be placed through shop@citrus-gs.org and these will be processed and shipped out.
  • The Council Shop will continue to offer curbside pickup on Tuesdays from 1pm – 5pm and Thursdays from 10am to 1pm and by appointment.
    • Orders must be submitted by email at least 48 hours prior to the order pick up date.
  • While the office is closed, several staff members continue to work remotely. You may reach out to our Customer Care team for any inquiries at customercare@citrus-gs.org
Online Activities for Kids of All ages

Troop leaders and parents are encouraged to embrace online opportunities to keep girls engaged with their sister Girl Scouts through virtual troop meetings. Girl Scouts can continue working toward goals, earning badges and completing service projects to help neighbors who may be negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Troop Meetings, Events & Camporees

Each troop/family should weigh their participation based on their own health concerns. As with any social activity, participation in Girl Scouts could present the risk of contracting COVID-19. While Girl Scouts of Citrus takes every safety and preventative precaution, Girl Scouts of Citrus can in no way warrant that COVID-19 infection will not occur through participation in Girl Scout activities.

The COVID-19 pandemic continues to change as infection rates rise and fall in different areas. There may be regional differences or developments since this guidance was published. Continue to follow local and national directives. Discuss plans with families.

As we begin to phase into certain in person activities, please keep in mind that these guidelines can change daily based on information from the CDC, GSUSA, and other governing bodies. Citrus Council’s website will have the most current information. 

Mah-Kah-Wee and Riverpoint are being opened to family groups of no more than 10 people per slotted time. For detailed information on activities and how to reserve your space, please refer to the Property Reservations page on this website. 

Please see the full details of the guidelines in the link below:

In-Person Meeting and Activity Guidelines

 

Product Booth Sales and Rallies

Below are the GSC guidelines for Product Booth Sales:

  • All girls and adults participating at the booth must have temperatures checked and must be below 100.4 to stay at the booth.
  • Pre-Screen survey must be completed by all girls and adults participating at the booth.
  • Masks must always be worn by all adults and girls
  • Tables must be set up a minimum of 6 feet apart for each station
  • Sanitizer must be at each station/table for girls, adults and customers
  • In between customers tables and swipe machines are wiped down, everyone should use sanitizer in between transactions
  • Be sure to have a garbage can available
  • Everyone should always maintain 6 feet distance between each other
    • Painters tape can be used to mark the floor 6 feet apart
  • ·Pens should be sanitized prior to use and labeled in a cup, once used they should be put  put in a used pen container, sanitize used pens as clean pens are used
  • Product displays should be for display only and set up behind customer area
  • Additional products should be kept out of reach where no one has access
  • Be sure that girls have their own set of products to fill orders
  • All interactions should adhere to recommended CDC and GSC guidelines.
  • Check with location for any additional Covid 19 guidelines they may have in place.
  • Table set up:
    • Product selection – paper order forms only. Customer fills out form and hands it to the GS adult
    • Contactless payment – swipe/prepaid
    • Girl Scout will pack order and leave on table
  • Adults are to review with girls safe Covid bathroom usage and girls must be escorted to and from the bathrooms by an adult
  • Always have two unrelated, registered adults with an eligible CBC always.
  • All girls must be in uniform and adults should represent Girl Scouts
  • Everyone must have on closed toed shoes
  • Be sure that there is water available for girls and adults that are participating at the booth 

 

GSC guidelines for Community Rally Events:

  • All participants must wear masks and practice social distancing by remaining 6 feet apart
  • Sanitizer must be at each station/table as well as in other areas such as entrances, bathrooms etc.
  • All participants must have temperatures checked and must be below 100.4 to stay at event.
  • Pre-Screen survey must be completed by all participants
  • Everyone must have on closed toed shoes
  • All activities/tables must be a minimum of 6 feet apart
  • All tables must be disinfected in between each girl
  • Girls will be assigned a time frame to come through and there are only two girls at each station on 10 -15-minute rotations staying 6 feet apart, parents can stay with girls if they choose or can watch from a distance.
  • Traffic should all follow the same direction and once girls complete the stations they should check out and leave the event 
  • Be sure there are garbage pails available by each station
  • Supplies should be individualized and not shared
  • All adults must wear masks and gloves when giving supplies out
  • Best practices would be to hand out items or supplies individually in a plastic bucket or tray one at a time, while disinfecting in between
  • Any food, drinks or snacks must be prepackaged from the store, no potluck or homemade prepared foods.
  • Bathrooms must be monitored; adults are to review with girls safe bathroom usage and should be disinfected regularly.
  • If nonmembers are present remember to order additional insurance by sending an email to Customer Care at customercare@citrus-gs.org  
  • Please send activity request forms for outdoor activities to Customercare@citrus-gs.org  for approval.
Meeting Virtually

While we cannot endorse or support specific online meeting tools for your use, see below for a list of free and low-cost tools that could be useful to you.

Please be sure to follow the GSUSA Virtual Meeting Guidelines found here

Video and Audio-Conferencing Tools with free versions 

While all of these options have a free version, please note you may be prompted to consider their upgraded versions for a subscription fee.

  • Zoom - FAQ
    Note: Meetings durations maximum of 40 minutes in free version
  • Skype - Support
    Note: Up to 10 participants free
  • Webex – Help Center
    Note: Limited file and content sharing in free version

Chat and Collaboration Tools with free versions

Additional low-cost tools for collaboration and conferencing to consider if the above options do not meet your group's needs.

Summer Residential and Day Camp

Despite the challenges posed by COVID during the summer of 2020, girls enjoyed a variety of online and home-based activities through GSC’s Virtual Summer Camp.

At this time, GSC is planning to reopen summer camp in 2021 provided it is safe to do so. We are also considering adding virtual camp sessions as they were very popular with girls and families. 

Drive-Thru Bridging Ceremonies

Drive-Thru Bridging Guidelines

Effective: Monday, August 24, 2020

Effective immediately—GSC guidelines for drive-thru bridging activities:

  • Girls must remain in their parent/guardian’s vehicle.
  • Masks must be worn during interactions between those inside the vehicle and those outside the vehicle.
  • The bags containing bridging materials should be cleaned with sanitizing wipes or cloths prior to handoff.
  • Major thoroughfares should not be used as drive-thru bridging sites.
  • It is recommended that troops work with local churches, community centers, neighborhood associations, etc. to identify and secure appropriate locations for their drive-thru bridging ceremonies.   
  • Any and all interactions should adhere to recommended CDC guidelines.
  • Please send activity request forms for Drive-Thru Bridging (only) to Customercare@citrus-gs.org for approval by the Program Team.

 

Further guidelines on other in-person activities are under review and will be released later in the week. 

Outdoor Activities/Events

Effective October 19, 2020  - The following GSC guidelines are in place for other outdoor activities such as special events, recruitment, holiday gatherings.

  • All participants must wear masks and practice social distancing by remaining 6 feet apart
  • Sanitizer must be at each station/table as well as in other areas such as entrances, bathrooms etc.
  • All participants must have temperatures checked and must be below 100.4 to stay at event.
  • Pre-Screen survey must be completed by all participants
  • All activities/tables must be a minimum of 6 feet apart
  • All tables must be disinfected in between each girl
  • Supplies should be individualized and not shared
  • All adults must wear masks and gloves when giving supplies out
  • Best practices would be to hand out items or supplies individually in a plastic bucket or tray one at a time, while disinfecting in between
  • Any food, drinks or snacks must be prepackaged from the store, no pot luck or homemade prepared foods.
  • Bathrooms must be monitored, adults are to review with girls safe bathroom usage and should be disinfected regularly

Please send activity request forms for outdoor activities to Customercare@citrus-gs.org for approval by the Program Team

Further guidelines on other in-person activities are under review 

Resources to Help Adults Cope

Parents are under a great deal of stress as they manage a new normal – working remotely, home-schooling, cooking more and pleasing finicky palettes. It can all add up. To help our adult members cope, we have compiled a number of resources on All Things Girl Scouts.

The CDC provides a number of resources aimed at relieving stress and caring for our families’ mental health during these stressful times.

Talking with Girls About the Virus and Social Unrest

Sometimes a parent could use a little help, especially when it comes to speaking with a child about a serious issue. The Coronavirus, and now issues surrounding racial prejudice, are currently taking top billing in the media. GSUSA published an article that provides some tips on how to talk with your daughter about the disease. They also have some good insights on how to teach your daughter about the value of diversity and inclusion.

The Center for Disease Control (CDC) also has some good advice for talking with kids about COVID-19, including ways they can avoid getting or spreading the disease and reminding them that health and school officials are working hard to keep everyone safe and healthy.

According to the CDC, children have not been shown to be a high-risk group for serious illness from this virus. As much as possible, children should be allowed to carry on with their education and normal activities. We understand that some children have underlying health conditions that put them at higher risk, and caregivers of children with underlying health conditions should consult with healthcare providers about whether their children should stay home. The CDC regularly updates information on how to keep children safe

The Facts about COVID-19

We ask that everyone – volunteers, parents and families – pay attention to the facts. The most important thing you can do is remain flexible and follow CDC recommendations for reducing risk.

In addition to routine environmental cleaning, there is a lot we can do to minimize the risk of catching and spreading the virus. Tips from the CDC include:

  • Keep your environment clean – routinely clean frequently touched surfaces like doorknobs, light switches, remotes, sinks and countertops. Find more cleaning tips at the CDC online.
  • Practice good personal health habits like washing your hands frequently and covering coughs and sneezes. Make sure your home and family have a plan of action – these CDC guidelines are helpful.
  • Know what to do if you or a family member gets sick. The CDC specifically advises to call your doctor and stay at home. Get more information here. It is also important to take special care with family members who are more vulnerable to infection.
  • Avoid gatherings of 10 or more people.
  • wear a mask and make sure it covers both your nose and mouth.
  • Practice social distancing - stay six feet apart.

 

 

We recognize that the uncertainties surrounding the virus are causing a great deal of stress. We will continue to monitor the situation and will continue to adjust girl activities as recommended by GSUSA, the CDC and local Health Department.