Youth work guidance update January 2022

Youth work guidance update January 2022

06 January 2022

Keeping Everyone Safe

A very Happy New Year to you all and very best wishes for the year of Scouting ahead. As we start to plan for the restart of Scouting this update is provided to strengthen our existing guidance (which remains in place) to put focus on specific mitigations and support the safe provision of Scouting activities for everyone.

Mitigations to supress the virus

Sections should continue to communicate and work with their members and those attending their activities to implement measures which will help supress the virus.

This includes:

wearing face coverings.
supporting people to self-isolate if they are asked to do so by the NHS.
regularly testing to help break the chains of transmission.
keeping premises as well ventilated as possible.
ensuring good hand hygiene and surface cleaning.
Ensure reasonable physical distancing between adults and between adults and young people in indoor settings. There is no requirement for strict physical distancing between children and young people, although maintaining distancing between secondary school pupils is encouraged where possible.

Risk Assessments

You are reminded about the importance of having a risk assessment for all Scouting activity, including COVID mitigations, and the need to review this regularly.

Face coverings

Everyone over 12 must continue to wear a face covering when participating in activities indoors, including when seated.
Children under 12 are currently exempt from wearing face coverings but can wear them if they choose.
Face coverings are required by law in most indoor settings. They should be worn by volunteers, young people, and other visitors (unless medically exempt).

Self-isolation and testing

Volunteers and young people over 12 and anyone else participating should be encouraged to adhere to the revised guidance on testing before meeting up with other households, especially indoors, and take lateral flow tests before attending. This can be combined with tests carried out for school. Squirrels, Beavers and Cubs do not need to do rapid tests.
Remind people not to attend if they are feeling unwell, or they have been in close contact with someone who is unwell and waiting an outcome of a PCR test.
Sections and Groups must keep clear records showing which adults and children spend sustained periods of time together and retain these for up to 21 days. This supports effective practice in following Test and Protect protocols.


If using a communal space, the provision of fresh air into indoor environments is essential to preventing the spread of COVID-19. By taking measures to increase the volume of outside air entering a building, such as opening windows, doors or vents, you can help minimise the risk of spreading COVID-19.

 Good hygiene and surface cleaning

Equipment should be cleaned daily or, if groups of children change during the day, on a sessional basis with a standard detergent and disinfectant that are active against viruses and bacteria. Surfaces should be cleaned regularly.

Food and drink preparation and sharing, including cutlery, mugs etc

Surfaces in kitchens or dining areas should be wiped down and disinfected regularly.
All crockery and equipment used in the provision of meals and snacks should be cleaned with general-purpose detergent and dried thoroughly before being stored for re-use.
Volunteers should consider whether to permit food and drink to be consumed in the setting used, unless essential for medical reasons.
If you use a kitchen area to make hot drinks or snacks, or access to water, young people and volunteers should bring their own cups/cutlery.
Sharing of food or drink should not take place.

Evening, Excursions and Day Trips

Evening, Excursions, and Day Trips can take place subject to the following conditions:

appropriate risk assessments being carried out.

any travel arrangements follow latest guidance

adherence to Covid protocols at the destination.

Residential Activities

Residential activities can take place and are subject to all Nights Away protocols.

There are no limits on overnight tent/room occupancy.

There are no limits on expedition group size indoors or outdoors however:

Physical distancing of at least 1 metre should be maintained indoors between adults, and between adults and children and young people (except when sleeping).
there is a requirement to maintain the integrity of the groupings in place for the duration of the trip. Campsites and Activity Centres can accommodate multiple groupings on site provided they can be kept separate during the residential.
as an appropriate mitigation, it is recommended that everyone over 12 taking part in an overnight visit is asked to undertake a Lateral Flow Device (LFD) test before the trip begins.

Graeme Luke
Chief Executive Officer