We hope that this message finds you and your friends and family well.
We wanted to get in touch with an update about our plans for potentially camping in 2021 as there are likely to be some significant changes to our normal programme.
Firstly, we are not planning to run any camps at Easter, Whitsun, or during any weekend in the spring or early summer. This is mainly due to the uncertainty around Covid-19 but also because we are having to make major changes to our stores systems over the next few months and even if we thought camping was possible at these times, it is unlikely we would be able to meet the equipment requirements.
We are hoping to be able to offer some camps in the summer but have not yet finalised the plans for these. Clearly there is still huge uncertainty about what the picture will be next summer around Covid-19 and social restrictions. We are attempting to develop a plan which allows for camping in at least two different scenarios. The National Youth Agency has developed guidance for youth organisations about overnight camping. The guidance specifies which youth activities can take place at different alert levels. A work-in-progress proposal was shared at Council in early December and
outlines the following options for camping in summer 2021:
- Alert level green: 9-13 night standing camps with 30-60 children plus their staff
- Alert level yellow: Short camps of 15 children plus their staff themed around activities, skills or ages
- Alert level amber: No camps
In both options for camps that are proposed there would not be a requirement for social distancing on camp. Work to develop the FSC approach to camping safely during Covid-19 is progressing (including
risk assessments, requirements for testing, management on camp etc). FSC’s committees are working together to develop and refine the proposal. We have not finalised plans for which age groups of children we will enrol on camps or how the enrolment process for staff and children will work. More on this to follow in updates over the coming months.
At this point we expect the summer camping dates will be 25th July to 6th August (first fortnight) and 13th August to 22nd August (second fortnight). Camps will be shorter if we go for the option of running
smaller camps with a limit of 15 children. We are really interested in knowing what members of staff think about the proposal and to gauge levels of interest in applying to staff 2021. We aim to seek feedback on the proposal from staff in January.
We have no plans yet for any camps in the Autumn but we anticipate that we will consider these in early spring.
We hope to be able to finalise these plans over the coming months and will be in touch soon with more detailed information.