8th Cheam Autumn Update 2020

1. Face-to-face Scouting.

As I’m sure you are well aware the schools have resumed face to face lessons, albeit within a very different teaching environment. Schools have been classed as an essential service and, as of recently, scouting is now considered the same.

However, there are very different rules regarding how both of these youth centred groups operate, so for clarity we have provided the latest update from Scout Headquarters below:

“Despite the recent change to social gathering restrictions in England (9th September 2020), the government
has confirmed that as an essential service, youth sector activity can continue unchanged where groups and units follow Scouts restart guidance, which is in line with COVID-19 secure NYA guidance standards.”

“We can confirm the following changes to the rules for Amber readiness in England:

  • Indoor activities are now allowed, but outdoor activities are preferred and should be encouraged.
  • Numbers change to 15 young people and up to five leaders (carers can be in addition and will not be counted in these numbers) – this applies both indoors and outdoors. Leaders can also include Young Leaders.
  • Young people must stay in their limited group size but adults will now be able to move between these groups, i.e. across the 25m spacing if outdoors or to a section meeting at a different time on the same day.
  • Leaders don’t need to wear a face covering when delivering activities – however, it’s recommended to wear one in all other circumstances while indoors.
  • Scouts and Explorers must now wear face coverings indoors. Exceptions as per national guidelines are permitted.
  • For now, all young people in all sections must continue to social distance by 2m from each other where possible and from adult volunteers at all times.”

These rules are set by the National Youth Agency (NYA), a Government body, and may well differ to rules surrounding other youth based groups – most obviously schools. More-over as scouting is a volunteer based service there is an equal requirement for adults to feel safe and happy to deliver face-to-face scouting as there is on your child’s welfare.

2. Autumn Term Programme.

Given the stipulations above and the well-being of our volunteers, both the Leadership and Executive teams have agreed the following short term plans for 8th Cheam:

  • Section meetings will not resume indoors for the remainder of this year. Obviously should the readiness level change this will be reviewed accordingly.

Considering this we would still like to offer a number of outdoor activities this term. At present we are planning to deliver approximately four outdoor sectional activities, roughly one per month.

  • These are:
    • September – Beavers and Cubs virtual camp (completed)
    • Early October – All sections, Walton First Activity day. Scouts, Nerf games and or cycling activity.
    • 31st October – All sections, Halloween woodland walk.
    • December – Christmas activity TBA
  • All activities are now subject to a Covid-19 specific risk assessment being produced by the leaders and approved by the District. Because of the general uncertainty around operators or venues offering activities and the evolving Government Covid-19 response, the notice period for some of these activities may be short. Please bear with us as much as possible and in return we will try to be a flexible as we can to allow as many young people to join in as possible.
3. Funds and fundraising.

The Executive has successfully secured a number of grants this year. The first of which helps pay for the scout hall whilst no sectional meetings are taking place. Others are being used for major maintenance projects around the hall – the most significant of which is our replacement heater project.

8th Cheam will not be charging subs again for this term due to the limited programme.

4. We are using Zoom as our on-line meeting platform.

The leaders and executive are keeping up to date with on-line meetings. They discuss the day to day running of the group’s finances, its HQ, programme ideas. Also to keep up to date with all the latest information sent down from the Scout Association.

5. We are still delivering a comprehensive programme.

All our sections are either communicating with parents via email and/or WhatsApp or running regular Zoom meetings so that our young people can keep up to date with their badge work, take part in our own indoors/outdoors group camp in September and stay safe and much more…

6. If you’d like your child to join 8th Cheam.

8th Cheam are still taking on new members. If you would like your child to join us, just send an email to the respective section leader.

Beavers 6-8, Cubs 8-10.5, Scouts 10-14.5, Adult Volunteer, (see relevant pages). We will forward you an application form by return email.

Stay safe and keep well

8th Cheam Scout Group